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Full text of "Proceedings of the National Convention of Deaf-Mutes (1st -2nd)"

EDWARD MINER GALLAUDET 
MEMORIAL LIBRARY 

Gallaudet College 

Kendall Green 
Washington, D. C. 



PROCEEDINGS 






m 








CINCINNATI, OHIO, 



AUGUST 25TH, 26TH, AND 27TH, 1880. 



Q^/>W>,"?7«T9/ 



New York : 
Printed at the New Yobk Institution fob the Deaf and Dumb. 

1880. 



EDWARD MINES GAL.LAUDET MEMORIAL LIBRAE* 

GALLAUDET COLLEGE 
WASHINGTON. D. C. 



PROCEEDINGS 

OF THE 

NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE, 

HELD IN THE GIBSON HOUSE, CINCINNATI, O., AUGLTST 24, 1880. 

Mr. Robert P. McGregor in the chair. It was moved that the 
Convention be opened with prayer by Eev. Mr. Mann. Passed. 

Voted that the presiding officer be empowered, after prayer, to 
choose a Committee on Permanent Organization and another on 
Rules. 

t3— Voted then that the Convention be called to order at the Belle- 
^9 vue House, at ten o'clock in the morning of the 25th. 

.__ It was agreed on motion of Mr, Freeman, that the Convention 

—-should be held from ten a. jr. until two p.m. ; but afterward, 

O on motion of Mr. Chapin, an amendment was made, changing 

"~~ the hours from ten a.m. to two p.m., to from ten a.m. to one 

A P.M. 



R. P. McGregor, of Ohio. 
L. M. Chapin, of West Virginia. 
E. S. Freeman, of Georgia. 
E. A. Hodgson, of New York. 
H. White, of Massachusetts. 



Members of the 
Committee. 






PROCEEDINGS 



First National Deaf-Mute Convention, 

HELD IN THE 

BELLEVUE HOUSE, CINCINNATI, 0., AUGUST 25, 1880. 



Mr. K. P. McGregor, Chairman of the National Committee, 
Galled the meeting to order at ten o'clock a.m., and Kev.A. W. 
Mann opened proceedings with prayer. Mr. McGregor then de- 
livered a neat little speech, explaining the object of the meeting, 
and closed by nominating Mr. Edmund Booth, of Anamosa, la., as 
temporary chairman. Mr. Booth was chosen temporary chair- 
man by acclamation. He was escorted to the chair by Messrs. 
Selah Wait, of Illinois, and H. C. Eider, of New York. On tak- 
ing the chair, he delivered an interesting speech, thanking 
the Convention for the honor. In the course of his remarks, he 
called attention to the wonderful change for the better that had 
taken place in the intellectual and social status of the deaf-mutes 
since he left school, over forty years ago. He said the large num- 
ber of intelligent faces he was confronted with, was proof of the 
value of education. His remarks were vigorously applauded. 

Mr. D. W. George, of Chicago, was chosen as temporary 
secretary. 

The following were chosen as a Committee to nominate per- 
manent officers : 

E. A. Hodgson, of New York. 
"Wat. S. Johnson, of Alabama. 
A. C. Powell, of Ohio. 
R. H. Atwood, of Massachusetts. 
Selah Wait, of Illinois. 



(> Proceedings of the First 

The following Committee on Rules was appointed : 

H. 0. Eider, of New York. 

H. White, of Massachusetts. 

S. M. Freeman, of Georgia. 

P. P. Pratt, of Ohio. 

E. L. Chapin, of West Virginia. 

J. E. Gallagher, of Illinois. 

G. T. Dougherty, of Missouri. 

S. J. Vail, of Indiana. 
Mr. T. F. Fox, of New York, moved that the Chairman ap- 
point a Committee on Credentials. Mr. Booth, in the chair, 
ruled the motion out of order on the ground that the Convention 
was not a meeting of delegates bearing credentials, but was a 
mass-meeting, at which each member was self-elected, if a dele- 
gate at all. 

While waiting for the reports of the Committees, Rev. Mr. 
Chamberlain, of New York, and Messrs. George Holmes and 
Frank Read made short speeches. There were calls for Mr. H. 
C. Rider and Rev. A. W. Mann, but both begged to be excused. 

Mr. D. W. George suggested that the Chairman invite Mr- 
William Hoagland — the oldest member of the Convention pre- 
sent — to a seat on the platform. The suggestion was' adopted, 
and Mr. Hoagland, treading briskly under the weight of seventy- 
five winters, mounted the platform and made a speech, which 
the Convention applauded enthusiastically. 

The Committee on the nomination of permanent officers made 
the following report : 

For President, R. P. McGregor, of Ohio ; 1st Vice-President, 
H. C. Rider, of New York ; 2d Vice-President, R. H. Atwood, 
of Massachusetts ; 3d Vice-President, D. W. George, of Illinois ; 
4th Vice-President, S. M. Freeman, of Georgia ; Corresponding 
Secretary, Robert Patterson, of Ohio ; Recording Secretary, S. 
J. Vail, of Indiana ; Treasurer, R. B. Lawrence, of Louisiana. 

Mr. Patterson, the nominee for Corresponding Secretary, 
said that it would be impossible for him to serve, 'and moved 
that E. A. Hodgson, of New York, be selected in his stead. Mr. 
8. J. Vail expressed an unwillingness to act as Recording Secre- 
tary ; and on motion of Mr. A. B. Greener, George T. Dougherty. 



National Deaf- Mute Convention. 7 

-«f St. Louis, was put on the ticket as a candidate for that office. 
A vote being taken, the following officers were elected : 

R. P. McGregor, - - President. 

H. C. Rider, - - 1st Vice-President. 

R. H. Atwood, - - 2d Vice-President. 

D, W. George, - - - 3d Vice-President. 
S. M. Freeman, - - 4th Vice-President. 

E. A. Hodgson, - - Corresponding Secretary. 
G. T. Dougherty, - Recording Secretary. 

R. B. Lawrence, - Treasurer. 

Mr. A. 0. Powell suggested that Messrs. E. L. Chapin and 
Robert Patterson be chosen to escort Mr. R. P. McGregor to the 
chair. The suggestion was adopted, and President McGregor took 
the chair amid great enthusiasm, and made an appropriate speech, 
thanking the Convention for the honor and promising to perform 
the duties of the office to the best of his ability and 
impartiality. 

Mr. George T. Dougherty then took his place as Recording 
Secretary. 

Mr. Atwood, of Massachusetts, moved that the President ap- 
point a Committee of Three to enroll the names of all the mem- 
bers of the Convention. Accordingly, Messrs. Atwood, Larson, 
of Wisconsin, and Hoagland, of Kentucky, were chosen. 

A letter of regret was received from Mr. J. T. Tillinghast, 
of Massachusetts, and was read to the Convention by President 
McGregor. 

Mr. Larson's motion to adjourn till ten o'clock the next morn- 
ing failed, no one seconding it. 

Mr. Greener, of Ohio, afterwards renewed the motion, but 
it failed, 17 voting for and 24 against it. 

President McGregor announced that the photographer, with 
whom he had conferred, would be ready to take pictures of the 
Convention Hall and also of the members of the Convention in a 
body, the next day. He appointed Mr. Powell a Committee to 
get the names of those members who should like to obtain copies 
of the pictures. 

Mr. Powfell's motion, which was the same as Messrs. Larson and 



8 Proceedings of the Mrst 

Greener's, was agreed to, and the Convention adjourned till ten 
o'clock Thursday morning. 



Thursday's session. 

The Convention was called to order at 10 : 20 a.m., President 
McGregor being in the chair. Kev. Mr. Chamberlain, of New- 
York, invoked the blessings of God upon the session ; after 
Which the minutes of yesterday's proceedings were read and 
approved. 

The President requested all the delegates to be ready for pic- 
tures by four o'clock p.m. 

Mr. H. C. Eider, of New Xork, reported that the Committee- 
on Eules, after much deliberation, recommended the rules of the 
United States House of Eepresentatives, as set forth in " Web- 
ster's Manual," for the government of the Convention. 

Mr. Vail, of Indiana, suggested that each member who was 
about to speak, should come to the platform instead of standing; 
by his seat. 

The Committee on Enrollment reported 143 arrivals, and ex- 
pected some twenty or thirty others during the day. 

Mr. T. F. Fox, of New York, took the floor, and speaking of 
the expenses incurred by both the National and Local Com- 
mittees, offered a resolution to the effect that all such expense* 
should be covered by voluntary subscriptions from the delegates. 
Mr. Harry White, of Boston, preferred equal assessments on all 
the members ; and he was followed by Mr. Dougherty, of St. 
Louis, who offered to amend Mr. Fox's resolution so that the 
membership fee at each Convention should be one dollar. The- 
amendment was not accepted by the mover. Eev. Job Turner, 
Of Virginia, suggested that in case of the adoption of Mr. Fox'a 
resolution, each of the members who might subscribe enclose his 
donation in an envelope. Mr. Fox's resolution being put to 
a vote, failed of adoption by a vote of 7 to 24. Mr. Dougher- 
ty then changed his amendment just mentioned, to a motion. Mr. 
Hodgson, of New York, spoke favorably of the motion ; and Mr„ 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 9 

Carraway, of Mississippi, offered an amendment which charged 
fifty cents for a membership, but afterwards withdrew it. Mr. 
Dougherty accepted Mr. George A. Holmes' amendment, which 
charged half the price in favor of members from the fair sex- 
The motion, as amended thus, was passed by a large majority. 

Mr. Lawrence, of Louisiana, offered a resolution that an in- 
vitation be extended to the Mayor and officials of Cincinnati, to- 
visit the Convention during the session. Messrs. Booth, of Iowa ; 
Johnson, of Alabama, and Emery, of Illinois, were appointed a 
Committee to notify the Mayor and officials of the invitation. 

Mr. Dougherty moved that the president be empowered to 
choose one member from each State represented at the Conven- 
tion, to constitute a National Executive Committee. Mr. Wait, 
of Illinois, thought that the Committee would be too large, sug- 
gesting that two should be appointed from each of the geo- 
graphical sections of the Unicn ; which number would not exceed 
nine. Mr. Atwood, of Massachusetts, remarked that the board,, 
that is, the present officers, would do for a National Committee. 
Mr. Emery moved to lay Mr. Dougherty's motion on the table. 
On motion of Mr. Greener, of Ohio, the Convention took a recess 
till two o'clock in the afternoon. 



AFTERNOON SESSION. 

The Convention re-assembled at two o'clock, with President 
McGregor in the chair. 

Mr. Atwood's amendment to Mr. Dougherty's motion was re- 
jected, two voting in the affirmative. Mr. George's amendment, 
making the Convention assembled a National Executive Commit- 
tee with the power to select the place and time of ' its successor,, 
shared the same fate. At last, Mr. Dougherty's motion was put 
to a vote and passed. 

Mr. Hodgson, of New York, occupied the floor, and read; 
a paper on "Industrial Education of Deaf-Mutes," 



10 Proceedings of the First 

INDUSTRIAL EDUCATION OF DEAF-MUTES. 

BY E. A. HODGSON, OF NEW YORK. 

In selecting Industrial Education as our subject, we begin 
with the firm impression that we can say nothing upon this topic 
that has not already been said ; nevertheless, we will have accom- 
plished our purpose if we present the old ideas in a different way, 
and will feel that to many here assembled they are entirely new. 

Industrial Education, we are well aware, comprises all the dif- 
ferent occupations of man, but it is our intention to confine our 
remarks as much as possible to the trades and occupations which 
are at present carried on in our deaf-mute schools. 

All of you are aware that nearly every institution for the deaf and 
dumb in the United States gives instruction in one or more trades 
in connection with the educational department proper. But al- 
though these institutions are continually graduating pupils who 
have been employed for years in the shops, observation has taught 
us that there are very few first-class workmen at any of the trades 
who are deaf-mutes. Boys while at work in these institution 
.shops form a habit of measuring their skill and capacity by the 
ability displayed by the most proficient among their fellows, not 
for a moment reflecting that the most skillful workmen among 
their comrades are far behind the standard of ability which is es- 
tablished in the outside world. 

The foreman is so frequently overtaxed with the amount of 
work assigned to him, and the hint that is broadly given by those 
over him that quantity, not quality, is required, that he does not 
have the time, even if he has the inclination, to devote to the care- 
ful and thorough instruction which is so desirable, and of such 
incalculable benefit to the pupils when the time arrives for them 
to leave the institution, which lias so long been their home, and go 
forth to do battle with the world, many of them with no other 
resource than the knowledge they have gained during their stay 
at school. In the industrial departments of many of our institu- 
tions, the object aimed at seems to be to make, if possible, the 
receipts cover the outlay and general expenses of carrying on 
the department. Little or no thought is given to the proficiency 
of the pupil in his work; he is very seldom encouraged, and the 
consequence is that he will shirk his duty on every possible 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 11 

occasion. JL\\ this tends to the utter inefficiency of the trades 
department, and the seeming lack of interest manifested by the 
pupil is pointed to as the prime cause. But it is not the real 
cause. The fault lies at the top among those who govern, and 
not among those who are governed. The efforts of the foreman 
to do well are usually overlooked, and his shortcomings criticis- 
ed ; so that, unless his heart is wrapt up in his work alone, he 
soon sees the inutility of trying to please by endeavoring to make 
the pupils skillful workmen, and will, on the contrary, con- 
centrate his energies to the supposed main object — that of 
making money — without in the least considering the hurtful 
effect such a course will be likely to exert upon those under his 
care. 

Every one knows and acknowledges the importance of making 
the pupil a thorough workman at some trade. Every one will 
admit that a complete and careful course of training will ac- 
complish this. Yet year after year scores of young men leave 
school, to gain in the course of a few months the unenviable 
reputation of being almost entirely ignorant of the trade which 
they had for several school-terms been engaged in learning. 
There may be a few exceptions to this rule, but the great 
majority make this reputation for their class, and the really 
competent deaf-mutes find it hard to convince people with 
whom they are seeking employment that they are possessed of 
a fairly thorough knowledge of their trade. 

The want of proper and adequate material is often a serious 
drawback in our Institution shops. In every trade, success de- 
pends upon the careful and correct execution of all the different 
parts, and where the proper tools and material are wanting, this 
can not be accomplished. 

Having stated some of the principal hindrances to a good in- 
dustrial education for the deaf and dumb, let us consider the 
question of how this state of things can be changed. It is plain- 
ly evident that the only way to alter for the better the system 
pursued, is to have more general and special attention given to 
the trades, together with good masters of shops — men who are in 
entire sympathy with the work for which they are engaged — and 
all the tools, etc., which are required to turn out first-class work at 
each individual trade. Then impress on the young apprentice 
that he will be expected to do well whatever he undertakes, no 



112 Proceedings of the First 

matter how long it may take him to do it — for time is n#ver wasted 
when devoted to attaining perfection. Make him understand 
that if he really wishes to become a good workman, constant care 
and unceasing attention to even the smallest details of work is 
necessary, and that the only way to become expert in his trade is, 
by long, faithful and earnest practice, and hard study and thought, 
coupled with a strong desire to succeed. 

To encourage the pupil to this end, we would suggest a periodi- 
cal examination by some one who is conversant with the details 
of the trade the former is learning. An examination once every 
three months would do a great deal towards inspiring an enthusi- 
asm and interest amongst the learners, and would result in untold 
benefit to them in after years. 

We consider the industrial education of the deaf and dumb to 
be of equal importance with that of the ordinary class-room in- 
struction, and although book-learning is held in far greater gen- 
eral estimation, it is rarely of itself sufficient to enable the pupil 
to earn his own living after he leaves school. And we believe 
that a time will come, though it may be slow in coming, when a 
school for deaf-mutes will mean something more than a place to- 
commit sentences to memory, and the ideas of both teacher and 
scholar will embrace a wider range than text-books, when the in- 
dustries, which are now so undervalued or ignored, will receive 
their full share of attention, and when the graduate will leave 
his Alma Mater fully armed and equipped to meet the obstacles 
which he will have to encounter in his struggle for daily bread. 
When strong in the resources of mechanical knowledge, he can 
dispense witli the charity of the tender hearted, can resent the- 
impositions of the mean and selfish, and can stand up for the 
rights which our American Constitution accords to every hon- 
est man. 

This is what a good education in the trades will do for our si- 
lent brethren, this is what will give them equality in business 
and in social circles, and it is for this purpose that we are all as- 
sembled here to-day — to advance our class in social rank, to en- 
deavor to prepare or point out the way to a life of useful happiness 
for the deaf and dumb. 

We have spoken of the trades as connected with deaf-mute 
schools, because there is where the error lies. " As the twig is 
bent, the tree is inclined," and the root of the evil exists in thfr 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 13 

inadequate provision for and the incompetent instruction given 
to the pupils in the trades while at school. We are aware that 
this state of things does not exist in all of the different shops of 
the various institutions ; and, in fact, we know of a case or two 
where little fault can be found, but all who have had any ex- 
perience in the matter will acknowledge the general truth of 
what we have said. 

If any of my friends here assembled have been victims to the 
false course of industrial education pursued in the schools from 
which they have severally been graduated, I would counsel all such 
not to be discouraged, because you may hitherto have met with 
failure and disappointment ; but letting the " dead past bury its 
dead," resolve to work with new added energy in the future. That 
you are inferior to your fellow- workmen who both hear and speak, 
should not deter you from striving by careful and painstaking 
performance of your duty to advance. Let your object be ex- 
cellence, and there is little doubt but your endeavors will in the 
end result in entire satisfaction to yourselves and to your em- 
ployers. 

Mr. Bead, of Illinois, commented on \,he subject briefly^ 
emphasizing his remarks on quality as against quantity, which, 
as the paper points out, is too generally the policy in deaf-mute 
establishments. 

Rev. Mr. Mann, of Cleveland, Ohio, who followed, said he 
had never met with a graduate fresh from his Alma Mater who 
had had a complete mastery of his trade and who was not in 
need of a re-apprenticeship, and endorsed Mr. Hodgson's paper 
generally. 

The next paper read was on "The Value of Encouragement 
and Commendation," by Mr. H. C. Rider, of Mexico, N. Y.., 
and delivered in signs by Rev. Mr. Mann. 

VALUE OF ENCOURAGEMENT AND COMMENDATION. 

BY H. C. RIDER, OF NEW YORK. 

Mr. Chairman", Ladies and Gentlemen :— This is a proud 
moment for me — not because I happen to have the honor of 
being the delegate appointed by the Empire State Deaf-Mute 



14 Proceedings of the First 

Association, and therefore the representative of the mutes of 
that great State — but because we deaf-mutes gather here in 
this beautiful city of Cincinnati in a JVational Convention. 

Those words imply much. They show what progress has been 
made in deaf-mute education and advancement since the revered 
pioneers of mute instruction in this country, Thomas H. Gal- 
laudet and Laurent Clerc, arrived at Hartford, Conn., and 
founded the American Asylum in 1817. Many times the work 
has seemed to be at a stand-still ; but it has gradually and 
continually crepjt on, until to-day we see a grand realization of 
our hopes, and also of the bopes of departed generations ; but 
there is much to be done yet, and I believe these national meet- 
ings will in many ways help on the work. 

This world is a cold and indifferent one, and we all are apt 
to grow into the spirit of the world in these particulars at least, 
and because of this we many times defeat projects fraught with 
much good. Now, it is not my intention to bore you with a 
lojig speech, but for a few moments I would like to call your 
attention to the value of encouragement and commendation. 

Man is a very sensitive being, and is affected by every action 
of those around him, whether he wills it or not. He may seem 
utterly indifferent to what others do, but still his surroundings 
exert a powerful influence over him. Let me give an instance 
or two. It has passed into history as a fact that the glance of 
a pretty girl as she tripped along the corridor of Windsor Castle 
was the primal cause of the change of religion of the British Em- 
pire under Henry VIII. Surely the cause was a trivial one, yet 
how mighty was its outcome, and the influence of the train of 
events following ! 

Another instance : Simply a word was spoken, but it was a 
kind word, and it showed that the speaker trusted him, and 
that saved John B. Gough, the great temperance orator. Would 
it not have been sufficient return for that act if he had simply 
been reclaimed for his family and himself ? But consider for 
one moment the vast amount of good that has been done by this 
eloquent man ; hundreds, yea, thousands have been brought 
back into paths of peace and happiness, but eternity alone 
will show the grand result of Gough's work. We can not 
here conceive the vast influences that have their centre in that 
kind word to that drunken man. 



National Deaf -Mute Convention 15 

Instances, though, of this class need not be multiplied. Promi- 
nent examples of the power of kind words are so numerous 
that each of us could give many -of them. 

To our assertion that man is a sensitive being, easily influenced 
for good or evil by those around him, we do not think any one 
will demur. And if this be true of the hearing world, how shall 
we describe our own class ? We are the most sensitive of the sen- 
sitive. It is but natural this should be the case. It is the result 
of one of Nature's best understood laws. With us, how powerful 
is the effect of a kind act, a thoughtful word, or even a friendly 
smile ! Many times we pass through an entire day in a joyous, 
happy frame of mind. We hardly know why we are happy ; 
but on careful reflection we find that an approving word spoken 
by some friend early in the day is the spring from which our 
joy flows. That little act put us in a happy frame of mind; 
and being thus placed on the right track in the early morn, we 
have followed on all through the day, and when evening comes 
we will sit down by our firesides, feeling content with ourselves 
and the world around us. 

But sometimes we have harsh, unpleasant words said to us, 
and how these grate upon our feelings; and, once in a while, they 
completely crush us down. They are as powerful as kind words, 
but, oh, how different is their influence ! One thoughtless 
sentence may do an unpardonable injury to some one, and a 
malicious assertion will rebound and injure the speaker as well 
as the one it was intended for, with the force and in. a like manner 
to the boomerang — that weapon used so skillfully by the natives 
of Australia. 

At the present day, deaf-mutes embark in many independent 
enterprises, and are occupying positions where they are brought 
into active competition with persons who have the enjoyment of 
all the senses. Here they have to stand or fall upon their own 
merits. This fact opens up a field in which each one of us can 
do much good. We have tried -to show the power of words — of 
encouraging words, especially — and how necessary these are to 
our, brethren who are working to secure a position of honor or of 
profit in the world ! They are ever-blessed gifts for the recipients, 
but especially are they welcome when accompanied by generous 
actions. Many times they would be mere ghostly phantoms 
unless doing went with them ; but with appropriate deeds these 



16 Proceedings of the First 

words become living beings fraught with mighty power for good. 

Thus, to apply the principle, when a deaf-mute starts a 
shoe shop or anything of that kind, let us not only speak a good 
word for him, but patronize him and secure for him all the cus- 
tom in our power. If he succeeds in business, we should be glad, 
and his success should be a source of joy to us. The same may 
be said in regard to a school started by one of our brethren, or of 
a newspaper directed by one of our number. Let us encourage 
all these enterprises by both words and deeds; and if they succeed, 
we should glory in this culmination of their labors, and not 
make any attempt to injure the project or detract from the 
desired issue. The success of all such undertakings reflects 
great honor upon our community as well as credit to the deserv- 
ing brethren. 

There is nothing more contemptible than envying the success 
of another, and trying to belittle it by saying and doing all you 
can against him. You do yourself no good and simply injure 
him who may be your friend. But there is far too much of this 
effort to detract from the brightness of the laurels another may 
have won. It should be put down by the strong arm of 
public opinion ; and let each one of us here in this assembly, 
representing the deaf-mute population of this grand country, 
resolve anew that we will exert our entire influence towards the 
establishment of enterprises by our mute friends upon a success- 
ful foundation, and when this is done, that we will not then turn 
around and treacherously pull the underpinning of the structure 
out. 

With union and judicious effort, we may become a mighty 
power in this glorious country. 

"Look to yon pure Heaven smiling beyond thee, 
Best not content in thy daikness a clod ! 
Work for some good, be it ever so slowly ; 
Cherish some flower, be it ever so lowly. " 



After an amusing and interesting exhibition of magical power* 
by one of the members, Mr. Hoggarth of Louisiana, the Conven- 
tion adjourned until ten o'clock, Friday morning. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 17 

FRIDAY MORNING SESSION. 

The Convention began sitting for the third day at 10 : 40, 
President McGregor in the chair. 

Prayer by Rev. Job Turner, of Virginia. 

Secretary's report of yesterday's proceedings was put on file 
without exception. 

A letter was read from the Young Men's Christian Association 
extending a cordial invitation to the delegates to visit their build- 
ings and participate in their services. A vote of thanks was 
tendered the Association, whose invitation was accepted. 

Mr. Atwood moved that Eevs. Chamberlain, Mann and Turner, 
be admitted as honorary members of the Convention, with all the 
privileges of regular members, excepting that of voting. Several 
members vigorously remonstrated, arguing that Eevs. Mann and 
Turner ought to be active members, if members at all, being 
deaf-mutes ; and at Mr. Hodgson's special request, the motion 
has withdrawn. 

The Chair announced a list of the members, who are to serve on 
a National Executive Committee, one from every State already 
represented at the Convention. Mr. P. A. Emery, who had been 
nominated for Illinois, rose and requested the honor to be direct- 
ed to his friend, Selah Wait, who accepted. Mr. W. S. John- 
son, of Alabama, extended a similar act of courtesy to Mr. 
Roberts. Mr. Norris's name was proposed for Tennessee ; but, 
on Mr. Carraway's protest on account of the disreputable profes- 
sion the former had been pursuing, and by which he had brought 
disgrace to our class, he was substituted by Mr. L. A. Houghton. 
The nomination of Mr. Atwood, of Massachusetts, for Arkansas, 
was done, in accordance with the wishes of the mutes of that 
State expressed in a letter to the President. On motion of Mr. 
H. White, Mr. Chapin, of West Virginia, was put down as 
representing the District of Columbia, where his home folk are 
living. The National Executive Committee, as finally constituted, 
are the following : 

Edmund Booth, Iowa, Chairman. 
H. C. Rider, New York, Secretary. 
R. H. Atwood (of Mass.), Arkansas. 
0. Roberts, Alabama. 
2 



18 Proceedings of the First 

S. M. Freeman, Georgia. , 

C. H. Angle, Kansas. 

R. B. Lawrence, Louisiana. 

G. T. Schoolfield, Kentucky. 

Selali Wait, Illinois. 

G. A. Holmes, Massachusetts. 

G. T. Dougherty, Missouri. 

S. J. Vail, Indiana. 

C. W. Carraway, Mississippi. 

P. P. Pratt, Ohio. 

AV. E. Guss, Pennsylvania. 

E. P. Holmes, Nebraska. 

John McGill, Maryland. 

L. A. Houghton, Tennessee. 

A. D. Hays, West Virginia. 

Job Turner, Virginia. 

M. H. Kerr, Michigan. 

P. S. Engelhardt, Wisconsin. 

E. C. Chapin (of West Va.), District of Columbia. 

Mr. White, of Massachusetts, moved that the present organiza- 
tion be known as the National Deaf-Mute Association. Mr. Rider, 
of New York, objected to the motion on the ground that the 
naming of the assemblage is within the jurisdiction of the 
Constitution and By-laws to be drafted. Mr. Engelhardt, of 
Wisconsin, moved to lay the motion on the table. Passed. 

Mr. Rider's motion instructing the National Executive Com- 
mittee to form a Constitution and By-laws before the assembling 
of the next Convention, was agreed to. 

Mr. Booth, from the Committee appointed to wait on Mayor 
Jacobs, reported his absence from the city. 

On the retirement of the National Executive Committee for 
consultation, the Convention adjourned for a recess till two 
o'clock P. M. 



AFTERNOON SESSION. 

President McGregor called the Convention to order again at 
two o'clock P.M. 
Mr. Rider, from the National Executive Committee, reported 



National Deaf- Mute Convention. 19 

that the Committee had by a majority vote selected New York as 
the place for holding the next Convention, which was to re-assem- 
ble in the middle of the year 1883, three years hence, date and 
place to be announced by the Chairman at least three months in 
advance, in order to give the delegates a chance to visit the 
World's Fair. The report was approved unanimously. 

Mr. D. W. George, of Illinois, followed Mr. Rider, with a 
paper on 



RELIGIOUS WORK AMONG OUR CLASS. 

BY D. W. GEORGE, OF CHICAGO, ILL. 

No one denies the need of religious work among our class. 
No one here needs to be retold the history of the rise and pro- 
gress of religious work among our class, from the humble begin- 
ning in the Bible Class room to what we see it is to-day. Its 
every step has occupied a prominent place in our deaf-mute press. 
Now that the work has progressed so long, it may be well to 
take a retrospective view, and consider the means employed 
to further it, and determine, if possible, whether all the good 
has been done which might have been done, had better counsel 
prevailed. It is only in the light of past experience that we 
can glean wisdom to guide our future course. 

The honor of being the pioneer in this work belongs to Rev. 
Dr. Thomas Gallandet. He was the first to organize and 
teach a Bible Class in New York City. All subsequent efforts 
were but imitations. Following the Bible Class, came regular 
church services, exclusively for our people. Then came mis- 
sions in other places, which he visited as often as circumstances 
allowed. Finding soon the field of labor thus opened constantly 
enlarging, he called to his aid one assistant after another, only 
to realize the need of more and more workers. The deaf-mute 
communities which he had visited were aroused to a realizing 
sensexxf the vital importance of maintaining the cause of Chris- 
tianity in their midst. What followed? The mutes of the larger 
cities formed Bible Classes among themselves, and organized 
societies holding Sabbath meetings at which the more intelligent 
members lectured on religious subjects. The success of one 
deaf-mute community in these undertakings stimulated others 



20 Proceedings of the First 

to like efforts. New societies sprang up, first in the larger cities 
and then in smaller towns, until now they are quite numerous. 

Here are Episcopalian deaf-mute missions and our deaf-mute 
societies side by side. Both are working in the same cause. 
Theoretically, they ought to make up a happy family and work 
harmoniously. But, alas ! the fact is, observation and experience 
return a contrary verdict. The disturbing element seems to be 
■denominationalism. This is an evil which exists among our 
hearing brethren in a more intense form than among our- 
selves. Were there no Episcopalians, no Baptists, no 
Methodists, no Campbellites, and no organizations of so called 
Christians working apart from each other on account of 
unimportant differences of opinion, were there nobody but 
Christians, maybe the world would be better than it is 
now. 

The Episcopalians, under the lead of Rev. Thomas G-allaudet, 
were the first to conduct services and preach sermons for deaf- 
mutes on the denominational plan. This was the first departure 
from the non-sectarian method of conducting worship which 
•we were accustomed to at our various schools. In our schools it 
was always considered that our teachers were treading upon for- 
bidden ground when they ventured to discuss controverted points 
or attempted to unduly influence our minds one way 
or another in regard to them, because our parents belonged 
to different denominations and preferred to keep our minds 
in favor of their own denomination, or at least clear of 
sectarian bias. It appears that this good rule, followed while we 
are in the tender years of tutelage, should be continued in force 
through life. But the practice of those who manage the 
Episcopalian Church Mission to Deaf-Mutes, betokens a con- 
trary opinion on their part. We have been witnesses of the edi- 
fying spectacle of Episcopalian ministers calling together deaf- 
mutes belonging to a dozen different denominations into an Epis- 
copal house of worship to see them, clad in sacerdotal robes of spot- 
less white, and surrounded by all the paraphernalia of the Episco- 
palian ritual, go through all the stereotyped forms prescribed by 
the high doctors of the Episcopal Church, and graciously ask them 
to join in such a form of worship. As only four or five out of a 
hundred were Episcopalians, they did not know how. Thev 
preferred to wait for the more practical aud substantial thing 



National Deaf-Mute Convention, 21 

they assembled to receive — viz., an instructive sermon. These 
meetings, at which two or three and veryoften no Episcopalian 
deaf-mutes were present, have been publicly announced as 
meetings of Episcopalian deaf-mutes. The sermons of these 
Episcopalian missionaries, in which was not included the 
recounting of the good done by the Episcopalian Church 
Mission have been exceedingly rare. We know of one sermon, 
in which was incorporated a very vigorous plea in behalf of 
the special doctrines of the Episcopalian Church. The moment 
a minister begins to practice such fantastic tricks before an 
assemblage, such as most of our deaf-mute meetings are made up 
of, somebody wants to enter into an argument with him. An* 
argument in Church with a minister is, of course, out of order. 

There is one rule of practice which these Episcopalian^ 
ministers rarely, if ever, suspend. Wherever they go, they must 
dispense religion only in an Episcopal Church. Wherever 
there has been a convention or a reunion of deaf-mutes, one of 
them has invariably made it a point to be on hand and invite 
them all to leave the place where they are assembled and repair to 
the nearest Episcopal Church. When they visit our schools^ 
they seem to think our chapels are not holy enough for their 
inspiration, for they invite the pupils to come perhaps several 
miles, over to an Episcopal Church to see them do as Epis- 
copalians do. Whenever they hear of deaf-mute societies 
holding Sabbath meetings, they make it a point to arrange 
for an Episcopalian service m an Episcopalian church, in 
the city where the society is located, and take care to 
notify all by letter, or otherwise, that their meeting is NOT 
to be held in the society hall, but in a big church with a " Saint" 
included as part of its name. If the local society happens to 
have arranged a meeting of its own on that day and date, the 
Episcopalian arrangement stands notwithstanding, and acknowl- 
edged rules of courtesy compel the society to suspend its meet- 
ing in order to favor the Episcopalian church with an attendance. 
In New England, a good deal of hostile feeling has been express- 
ed against the manner of conducting the Church Mission. The 
dissatisfaction in that quarter seems to be widespread. It is 
this feeling which is said to have called into existence the Silent 
People. The mission of this paper seems to be to advocate- 
non-sectarian religious societies for deaf-mutes, and to give all' 



%% Proceedings of the Mrst 

concerned to understand that God allows no man to lock up 
the Bread of Life with the key of religious patent right. The 
feeling of discontent is not confined to New England. The 
sectarian character of the Episcopal services for mutes have 
excited adverse comment wherever they have been held. The 
services were so different from the plain, simple, unostentatious 
worship the mutes were accustomed to in their school chapels, 
and seemed so novel, that the majority of them were provoked 
to an irreverent smile. 

Well, " What are you going to do about it?" is the grand 
question. How are we to effect an improvement ? Are we to 
have different preachers to preach the different doctrines taught 
by the different denominations ? Decidedly, no. Our class 
is too small and widely scattered to support more than one 
general church mission. In our opinion this mission should 
be strictly non-sectarian. Its missionaries should follow as 
nearly as possible the example set by our Saviour, who never 
deemed it too profane to preach sermons on the Mount, on the 
sea, or anywhere he happened to be. Its missionaries should 
bear in mind that the word of Christ himself, and the example 
of Paul and the apostles, gave assurance that their labors will 
be just as acceptable in a quiet room where two or three or 
more are gathered together, as within the architectural magni- 
ficence of a fashionable church building. We would like to see 
a deaf-mute Moody — yea, several of them. We would like to 
have a church mission formed somewhat upon the plan of the 
Young Men's Christian Association, and at all the meetings 
to have this placard conspicuously posted : " ISTo discussion of 
controverted points." We have a plan to offer which suggested 
itself only a few days ago, during the preparation of this paper. 
It is no pet scheme of ours. We have not nursed the idea long 
enough to secure a patent right to it. If it admits of improving, 
alteration, amendment, or the substitution of another and better 
plan, we would be glad to hear from any of our fellow deaf- 
mutes, either here in convention or out of it. It is this : That 
steps be taken to organize a national noii-sectaiian deaf-mute 
church mission, to be governed by a Board of Trustees composed 
of one-half deaf-mutes and one-half hearing gentlemen, and a 
general manager who shall appoint deaf-mutes of good moral 
character, educational attainments, and possessing all other 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 23 

requisite qualifications for preaching the gospel, and assign them 
to duty in. such portions of the country as he may deem advis- 
able. 



Mr. E. P. McGregor then took the floor and made the follow- 
ing remarks : 

me. r. p. mcgrbgor's reply. 

Mr. President : — While I agree with some of the points pre- 
sented by the foregoing paper, still there are others that are, I 
am sorry to say, very unjust, and others still that are untenable. 
For instance, the writer pleads for what he calls unsectarian re- 
ligious training, and cites our training while at school as a 
shining example of what such should be after leaving school. 
Now, while I certainly agree with him that our teachers 
should carefully refrain from giving us any bias for any 
particular creed while our minds are undergoing the process 
of training, and should strive to inculcate us witli only the 
simple truths of the Gospel and the moral law, yet I cannot 
see why the same process should be continued after we leave 
school, when we are no longer children, but are supposed to be 
men and women capable of judging for ourselves — else to what 
«nd is all our schooling ? Then it becomes our duty as well as 
privilege, to decide to which denomination we shall belong ; for, 
though they all agree on the main points, they differ in detail. 
Therefore I see no objection to denominational teaching, even if it 
is of the most pronounced type — use your judgment, and if you 
do not like it, there is nothing to force you to accept it. 

But it so happens that the only denomination that has taken 
any interest in our spiritual welfare, until within a very short 
period, is the Episcopal Church, and, as a matter of course, most 
of the recent accessions to the Church among us have joined that 
denomination — hence all this noise. The Episcopal Church is 
simply reaping its reward, End, instead of being blamed and abus- 
ed for this result, deserves the highest praise and encouragement ; 
for did it not stand by us when all others stood aside and left us 
to our fate ? 

My friend complains that these Episcopal ministers and mis- 
sionaries, for our special benefit, insist on holding their services in 



2-t Proceedings of the First 

Episcopal Churches. Very well, they have a perfect right to hold 
their services wherever they please. Did you ever hear of a Pres- 
byterian minister preferring a Baptist Church to one of his own 
denomination ? or of a Methodist minister officiating in an Episco- 
pal Church when he could find one of his own in the neighbor- 
hood ? In point of fact, Episcopal ministers never refuse to hold 
meetings in other Churches, when none of their own is to be 
found in the place. If they were to ask the use of the edifice 
of any other denomination when they have one of their own 
to go to, they would be asked the very pointed question, "Why 
don't you use your own church ? Is it not good enough for 
you ? This complaint is puerile in the extreme. 

Again, my friend complains that we cannot hold a picnic, con- 
vention or social gathering, without being startled out of our wits, 
and having all our fun spoiled, by an apparition in black looming 
up in our midst and inviting us to attend divine service, the follow- 
ing Sunday, at an Episcopal Church — remember the apparition 
always says "Episcopal Church" — if it were a Methodist or a 
Catholic Church, our feelings would not receive such a wrench. 
Here my friend unconsciously compliments the very denomination 
he wishes to slur, for he confesses that no other denomination ever 
takes the pains to invite us to their service — or does he mean to say 
all ministers should be excluded from our gatherings ? They are 
usually especially invited to and honored at such meetings among 
hearing persons. 

But the chief complaint appears to be that the Episcopal min- 
isters and missionaries advise us to join that church ! Well, did 
you ever hear of a Methodist minister advising others to join the 
Episcopal Church, or a Catholic priest telling you to join the Pres- 
byterian Church ? Does not the Catholic always advise you to 
join the Catholic and the Methodist the Methodist church, and so 
on ? Well, why can you not accord the same right to the Epis- 
copalian. Or is a man when he comes before a deaf-mute audi- 
ence to throw aside all of his convictions and preach only as those 
before him shall dictate ? If that is what is desired, it is asking 
entirely too much. 

Now, I happen to belong to the Episcopal Church, but I accord 
to every man the right to believe what he pleases and speak as 
he pleases ; but at the same time, I demand the same right for 
myself and others. I have attended a good many services for 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 25 

mutes in Episcopal Churches, but I have never yet seen the 
doctrines of that church pressed offensively upon any occasion. 
If, however, after the service any one comes to the minister and 
asks his advice about joining a church, he will certainly advise 
the applicant to connect himself with the Episcopal, in pre- 
ference to any other, as he has a perfect right to do ; and indeed 
it would be strange if he did otherwise. 

I would be much pleased indeed, if other denominations would 
take enough interest in us to send ministers among us, but the 
fact remains, that at present they do not. "Beggars should not be 
choosers," and the fact is undeniable that we are beggars for 
spiritual food after we leave school ; and what is more, that it is 
largely our own fault that such is the case : and if under these 
circumstances we find what little we do get slightly seasoned 
with Episcopacy, we have no right to complain, but should gladly 
receive and digest it. 

As for the plan proposed by my friend for the formation of an 
unsectarian association, it is impracticable for the reason, which I 
blush to confess, that mutes keep their pockets so tightly closed 
where religious matters are concerned, that it is next to impossible 
to extract five cents from them for the purpose proposed; and 
besides, we are so widely scattered that united action is out of the 
question, except in very large cities like New York. Although 
I sincerely hope the day will soon come when all this will be 
changed, and when we will support ministers of our own instead 
of being dependent, as at present, upon hearing persons for our 
spiritual nourishment. 

Besides this, the plan proposes a strictly wore-sectarian minister 
to minister to the different sectarian wants of all, while he him- 
self must belong to none. Strange hybrid ! Such a person can- 
not be an ordained minister, and hence he would preach without 
authority, and when we should desire his services to marry us,, 
christen our children, and bury us, he would have to blushingly 
refer us to some despised sectarian ! 

But why all this fuss about the only Church that has for so 
long taken any interest in us ? Those who do not like its minis- 
trations are not compelled to attend. Why not rather, by show- 
ing our appreciation and cordial support of it, encourage other 
Churches to "gV> and do likewise," instead of driving them away 
by our treatment of the pioneer in the work ? 



26 Proceedings of the First 

Mr. Wait, of Illinois, alluding to Mr. George's complaint 
concerning the alleged exertions of the Episcopal Church in the 
conversion of mutes, compared his church and others to 
a community of the lazy poor grumbling against their wealthy 
neighbor who has enriched himself by honesty and industry. 
Being himself of a different religious denomination, he honors the 
Episcopal Church all the more for being the only one that has 
so far taken a general interest in the spiritual welfare of the 
deaf and dumb. 

Mr. Holmes, of Massachusetts, assented to the whole of Mr. 
George's views on the subject, and spoke of the troubles that 
arose in New England between the Church Mission and the 
Bible Class that knows no sect. He .took occasion to correct 
the erroneous impression that was prevalent concerning the 
excessive hostility of the New England mutes to the Church 
Mission. 

He was followed by Mr. Edmund Booth, of Iowa, who spoke 
as follows : 

BEMARKS OF MB. EDMUND BOOTH. 

When in a town or a small city there is an Episcopal Church 
and only one or a few deaf-mutes, not enough of sufficient num- 
bers to employ or pay a preacher in the sign-language, it might 
be advisable for such mutes to attend the Episcopal service. 
There they can read in the book of Common Prayer (or what- 
ever the book may be called) while the Clergyman is reading at 
the desk. I know of mutes whose families are connected with 
other than Episcopal Churches, and in every such case the 
mutes prefer to go with their families, some member being 
•always ready and willing to furnish the text or point out the 
hymn. The advantages in these two cases are about equal. 
Three years ago, I attended an Episcopal service in Chicago. 
Kev. Mr. Mann officiated. It was in the vestry of the church, 
and the windows admitted the clear light of heaven. It all 
went well and was perfectly satisfactory. 

And now comes the dark side. Some weeks since, I attended 
church on the Sabbath in Chicago, the preachers being Kevs. 
Gallaudet and Mann, with the regular pastor of the Church for 
the hearing portion of the congregation. "A dim religious 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 27 

light" prevailed, perfectly proper, doubtless, for the hearing 
people ; but for the mutes a flat reversal of the command, "Let 
there be light." I and some other mutes were seated some 
distance from the platform. The preacher's face was most- 
ly in darkness, and when seen was alternately bronze, ver- 
milion, sky-blue, or some other color, bringing to me the re- 
collection of the " noble red men " of forty years ago in the forest. 
These various hues came from the stained windows— stained to 
shut out the light. So far as hearing people are concerned, I 
find no fault with this. In their case all looked well. Even 
the pastor addressing them appeared just as he should, vest- 
ments and all. 

But for those addressing the mute part of the congregation 
it struck me as a burlesque. It was difficult, at the point where 
I and others were seated, to gather what was said, and impossible 
to catch a single word on their fingers. The eye could not pene- 
trate with clear vision the body of more than semi-darkness which 
floated between us and the preachers. The service to us profited 
nothing. Episcopal churches are built for hearing people, not 
for the deaf. 

Two evenings ago, some of us attended Episcopal service at one 
of the churches in this city of Cincinnati. There were three 
clergymen for the mutes and one for the hearing, all in canoni- 
cals. Again the one for the hearing looked well, and perform- 
ed his part well, and, as at Chicago, the others were, in large de- 
gree, a farce. It is hard language, I know, and I speak it not will- 
ingly, but it is time to tell them the plain truth, for not one of the 
three seems to have given thought to the fact that to bring light 
to the mind of a deaf-mute, there must be light for the eye. The 
gaslights were arranged solely for a hearing congregation, but a 
little common sense, m which they appear sadly wanting, might 
induce our preachers to place themselves where, not their backs, 
but their faces, arms and hands could be seen to best advantage 
by those sitting in front of them. And even then there is still 
the annoyance from the dazzling gaslight, but that is a lesser 
evil than the absurdity of not light enough to know what the 
reverend gentlemen are saying. Theatrical managers are "wiser 
than the children of light." 

Another trouble, of slight importance perhaps, but which is 
not only out of place, but looks ridiculous. I have said the vest- 



28 Proceedings of the First 

ments of the Episcopal clergy look well on one who ministers to 
the hearing. Hanging from the arms of one using signs, the 
constant flutter, and especially in a darkened church, or where 
the preacher stands in an unfavorable position as regards light, 
these wide white sleeves are far more conspicuous than the motion 
of his arms or the play of his fingers. Where it is so difficult or so 
impossible to know what he is saying, we are apt to think of a 
scarecrow in a cornfield, with its rags fluttering in the wind. 
Our preachers should have something of that most uncommon of 
all things, common sense. Thomas H. Gallaudet, who first 
established preaching by signs, was largely possessed of that com- 
modity, and would never have dreamed of preaching to mutes in 
a darkened church or with lights so placed as to dazzle the eyes 
and throw little or no light where light is most needed. 



The question of a Deaf and Dumb Ladies' College was 
suggested for discussion by Mr. Carraway, of Mississippi, who 
finally offered a motion empowering the Chair to select a 
committee of five to draw up a petition to be extensively 
circulated among, and signed by, the deaf-mutes of the United 
States and others interested in the matter, and to be presented 
to Congress at the earliest practicable time. He proceeded to 
say that in his opinion such a petition could easily get ten or 
twenty thousand signatures. Out of the forty thousand mutes 
in this country, at least five hundred would have interested 
themselves in the subject, and each of these five hundred could, 
with no difficulty, have induced twenty-five or more friends to 
sign the petition, whether they were materially interested in it 
or not. The speaker had consulted two members of Congress, 
both of whom seemed to think that it was more possible than 
many of the political bills that have been jobbed through 
Congress. 

Mr. Fox, of New York, in the course of his remarks, 
confessed that the project was a very commendable one, but that 
it should be advanced by those whom it more closely concerned. 
He called upon some of the ladies present to state their views 
on the question, while the motion was being discussed, or if 
they preferred it, to agitate it through the deaf-mute press. 
He thought that by this means an idea might be obtained how 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 29 

the matter is considered by a majority of mute ladies, and 
consequently lead to the necessary action being taken at the 
proper time. 

Mr. Engelhard t, of Wisconsin, followed with a candid and 
unreserved acknowledgment as to the praiseworthiness of the 
scheme, but entered his earnest protest against the propriety of 
the present time for acting definitely on the matter now under 
discussion. 

Mr. White, of Boston, called the attention of the Convention 
to the fact that the project was then newly conceived of, and 
attached a great deal of importance to the necessity of first 
giving the question an elaborate discussion, which was not pos- 
sible here, in view of the nearness of the hour for the final 
adjournment of the Convention, and also considering there 
were a number of other papers awaiting their turn to be read 
before the body. The question could receive a more deliberate 
consideration at the hands of the silent press, and then it would 
be long before a safe decision could be reached ; and he sup- 
plemented his remarks with a motion to lay Mr. Carraway's 
resolution on the table, which was agreed to nearly unanimously. 

Mr. Larson, of Wisconsin, submitted a paper entitled : — 
" How the Deaf and Dumb regard the true religion ;" but 
scarcely had he begun to deliver it, when Mr. Fox suddenly 
rose and raised the point that all religious matters were ex- 
cluded from the floor by the resolution offered by Mr. J. K. 
T. Hoagland, and passed by the Convention. The point was 
decided by the Chair as being well taken ; whereupon Mr. 
Larson retired with his paper from the platform. 

Mr. P. A. Emery, of Illinois next, kept the attention of the 
Convention during the delivery of a paper On " Love of Labor." 

LOVE OP LABOR. 

BY P. A. EMERY, OF ILLINOIS. 

Proposition : The love of labor leads to profits and the pleasures 
of life ; while the dislike of it leads to losses, unnecessary trouble 
and wearisome toil. 

Remarks : Ever since the mandate of God to Man in the 
early age of society : "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat 



30 Proceedings of the First 

bread," has labor been absolutely necessary to the life 
and comfort of man (?) True, action — motion — has always exist- 
ed and is the result — ultimation — of life, of every thing; in fact mo- 
tion is life, while inaction is death.* Yet, the command, "In the 
sweat of thy face thou shalt eat bread, " does not mean or imply 
that there was no action — labor — before it was given, but that 
in its letter sense, a sensual man would find in his wanderings 
from heaven — the love of the useful — that his daily labor for 
subsistence would be more irksome and laborious, because in 
laboring in evil — mental and moral darkness — he would more 
keenly feel the wrong. 

In its spiritual sense, " labor has respect, in a good sense, to 
the things that are of love ; and in an opposite sense, to the things 
that are of evil." Hence, it has no reference to labor as un- 
known, nor a curse in it previous to, or since what is called 
" Adam's Fall. " Because "to eat the labor of thy hands" is 
not a curse, but "signifies celestial good, which man receives 
by a life according to divine truths from the Lord. " 

In support of this idea, allow me to quote a little more. "The 
labor of the righteous tendeth to life. " "In all labor there is 
profit. " " The sleep of the laboring man is sweet. " Thus 
we see that labor was not intended in itself as a curse, as man 
supposes and has been erroneously taught, but rather a 
blessing, because idleness is a disgrace to any and every one, 
no matter who he or she is, nor the political, social or financial 
position occupied, and that laziness, or dislike of work tends to 
lower one in manhood and womanhood, and to produce an abnor- 
mal state of the physical system which eventually results in 
premature death. 

In order to make life a success and plgasure, we must first of 
all love that which is absolutely necessary to our normal existence; 
at least like it sufficiently to follow it with something of a pleasure, 
if not with a real wish. Otherwise labor will be a burden and 
a curse, and cause us to overlook or miss its profitable points 
and reap sorrow in losses. 

Though all men, like poets, are born for certain vocations 
that they are best fitted by nature to follow, yet if they could 
love or at least cherish no dislike for work out of their line of 

* " Matter is inert ; spirit alone can move ; therefore, Motion is the Spirit of 
God made manifest in Matter." 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 31 

taste, they will succeed in proportion to the like and strength, 
they have for it. The simple striving to like all that our hands 
find to do, is the first principle of success, and that success 
depends upon the will — and where there is a will there 
generally is a way, and that way is sure to lead to. 
success ; and without it we cannot make that headway which is 
necessary for the wants of life, nor enjoy life as we should. 

It is said, " whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy 
might," including all hard or disagreeable work that circum- 
stances make it necessary for us to do. This we can do 
and will be sure of failure if we cherish or cultivate the least 
shadow of dislike or hate for it. 

Digging a ditch, washing clothes or any kind of hard and 
dirty work may not be my proper work, yet if I must do such 
for myself or for another, I am morally bound to do it as 
cheerfully, willingly, intelligently and faithfully as I know how, 
and that, too, as though it was my trade and delight to do it, at 
least for the time being. While performing any such labor, we 
should reflect on the light and useful side, and never on the irk- 
some and disagreeable side ; ever remembering that God wants 
no grumbling at what He calls us to do. When we make " no 
grumbling " our motto, hard work will often become easier, irk- 
some work less irritating, disagreeable, more pleasant, and an 
unprofitable job a paying one ; at least far more so than if we 
worked as though we hated and dreaded such. 

All this I know from years of actual experience in the kitchen 
over hot fires and the dreadful wash-tub ; in the field plowing, 
planting and hoeing corn in the "boiling hot sun " among clods 
larger than I could lift, and so thick that it seemed impossible 
to get fine dirt enough to cover or hill up the corn ; in the 
garden, hoeing until my back felt like it would break in two ; in 
the forest cutting wood or mauling rails, which it was so hard 
as to make one feel more like lying down in the mud or snow 
and die than to keep on ; in the gold mines in California in dig- 
ging and wheeling dirt like a genuine negro from early 
morn until late at night, with sore hands, weary legs, aching- 
back and paining arms, as though I would go all to pieces from the 
mere force of aching ; in the confines of the shop ripping plank, 
planeing boards, etc., like a penitentiary prisoner ; in digging 
cellars and wells down through hard clay beds, sand and rock, 



32 Proceedings of the First 

with such a laborious process that it would take millions of years 
to have gone through terra Urma ; and last, though not the least, 
in teaching the young idea how to shoot with a physical weari- 
ness that wears one out faster than manual labor, and in writing 
books, designing charts on science, history, etc., over the mid- 
night lamp with such mental strain and anxiety as to cause 
friends to think that my entering an Insane Asylum as an inmate, 
a mere question of time ! or an early grave a certainty. 

The want of a trade and an education, and various circum- 
stances over which I had no control, made it necessary for me 
to labor, toil and suffer in so many of the ways of life, many 
of which I have not mentioned, for the maintenance of physical 
manj that I might have a keen feeling and true sympathy, born 
of sad and varied experience, for the hard working and suffering 
poor of all classes of people, especially for the deaf-mutes, who 
of all people are forced to toil uncheered by the songs of the 
feathered tribe, or the humming of the insect world, or to listen 
to the merry chats that are pleasant " time killers, " and unable 
to give vent in song that makes the soul happy in lonely fields 
and over hard and irksome tasks, as one imprisoned in a dungeon ! 
Hence, if I write in an unseemly severe strain, remember that it 
is due to a life of hardship and severe toil. 

I have no recollection of totally failing to do what I undertook, 
though I confess that I often was well used up, and felt like 
giving up the ghost ere my day's work was done, which was 
due in a large measure to the idea that taught me that labor was 
a curse, brought on me by Mother Eve's eating an apple ! Had 
I been taught the reverse, and that all honest labor, ever so 
menial, was greater dignity than laziness, ease or not much 
to do, and that it is more manly to toil hard than to live upon or 
off others without returning a full equivalent, I certainly would 
have toiled with less discontent and far more cheerfully, which 
would have told less upon my physical body in the way of weari- 
ness and wear, and enabled me to enjoy life far better than I 
have. And it is for the idea of the dignity, honesty and physical 
use of labor that I write, that others may be benefited, especially 
the young deaf-mutes ere they grow to be chronic grumblers, 
idle drones and lazy fops, under the false and abominable idea 
that labor is a curse and work undignifying, and that it is a dis- 
grace to " pull off your coat and work like a man," or to " roll up 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 66 

your sleeves and wash the dishes like a lady," not knowing that 
"a laboring man is nature's greatest nobleman .'" 

As physical toil and mental labor are an absolute requirement 
for our physical existence as well as for the best of physical health, 
it is wrong, if not wicked, to look upon any kind of honest labor 
even of the most menial kind, as a curse, degrading or dishonor- 
able ; for as God toiled to create and to sustain every thing with 
a divine love for them, so should we labor to exist in all condi- 
tions of life, with at least a strong effort to like, if we cannot or 
do not love whatever we must do. With an effort, what we do 
not love Avill relieve drudging toil of one-half of its irksomeness, 
and disagreeable labor of one-half of its unpleasantness. As all 
honest labor is honorable and necessary, it is the dunce who laughs 
at or makes fun of the " greasy mechanic," the tiller of the soil, 
the street cleaner and the rag picker ; and the fool who disdains 
honest toil of any kind, because it may sore his hands, roughen his 
features, or soil his clothes, or for fear some fool may laugh or make 
fun of him and the dunce of a fool who thinks it manly when it 
is really very wwmanly to live by genteel laziness and snobbish, 
rascality, and the rascal who robs by living off others or in- 
trudes himself, for greed, into vocations that is not his by nature, 
or occupies and prefers places "in which the duties are very 
light and the pay very large," and the position genteel ! 

Permit me to ask you all to look more kindly upon manual 
labor, and to do whatsoever your hands find to do with a manly 
cheerfulness and a determination to do your best, and to throw 
grumbling and discontent aside as an element of failure and 
unfit for you to nurse or harbor ; to teach your children and 
others by example and precept that all labor is honorable and 
must be performed without grumbling or fault-finding, as these are 
the enemies of success and usefulness and the friends of failure, 
poverty and want ; and that "an idle head is the devil's work- 
shop," and lazy hands his tools. And that according to the 
amount of love and energy and care devoted to whatever we have 
in hand, in just that proportion will success crown our efforts. 
This is why boot-blacks rise to great wealth, political and relig- 
ious prominence, by an energy and love that is worthy of a higher 
vocation ; while he who blacks boots, shovels dirt or any other 
kind of service with a dislike and feels degraded to toil always 
fails, and brings upon himself the scoffs and contempt of others, 
3 



34 Proceedings of the First 

not on account of vocation, but on account of his own degrading 
idea of life and labor and the discontented manner in which he 
performs his work. Nearly all our great and rich men rose by 
the love of study and toil from ignorance and poverty. 
The following whereases and resolutions were offered: 

Whereas: From the tenor and spirit of the paper entitled 
"Love of Labor," it is wrong, if not wicked to speak con- 
temptibly of labor of any kind or to mauifest discontent and 
dislike for whatever our hands find to do ; and that to do so is 
unmanly in us and disrespectable towards Him who is the Kuler 
of our life and action. 

Whereas : The deaf-mute, on account of deafness and dumb- 
ness is shut out from nearly all the professional channels, and 
compelled to live largely and often exclusively by manual toil ; 
therefore, be it 

Resolved: That we deaf-mutes accept the above facts as inevi- 
table, and in duty bound to God, ourselves and our fellow men 
will ever strive hereafter to labor more in the spirit of submission 
to Divine Will and contentment, and strive to cultivate a liking 
for all we have to do ; that we may bring in the element of 
success and happiness, which is so essential to our welfare here 
and hereafter, and in no manner throw discredit upon labor or 
make fun of our laboring brother, be he or his toil ever so 
humble. 

Resolved: That in view of the fact that deaf-mutes largely 
depend upon and must live by manual labor, that this Conven- 
tion respectfully but earnestly ask the Superintendents, Princi- 
pals, Teachers, Matrons, Shop-teachers, Farm and Garden-bosses 
of Deaf and Dumb Institutions and Schools to do all they can by 
counsel, advice, and individual example to inculcate and impress 
upon the mute pupils the absolute necessity, dignity, etc., of 
labor ; and the imperative duty they owe to God and them- 
selves — the duty of ever striving to like and to faithfully perform 
in willingness and cheerfulness all their duties in and out of 
school, especially the love of work. And to discountenance, check 
and forbid any grumbling about their studies and work, 
weather and persons, to the end that they may grow up with a 
love for work, and go forth to battle with stern realities of life 
with a manly spirit and an honest endeavor to be faithful and 
cheerful workers in all the walks of life. 



Hatvonal Deaf-Mute Convention. 35 

Mr. Holmes, of Massachusetts, moved that a vote of thanks 
be tendered to the proprietors of the Bellevue House for their 
generosity in granting the free use of its spacious hall to the 
Convention, and also to Kevs. Chamberlain, Turner and 
Mann, for helping and participating in the proceedings of the 
Convention. 

At 5:15 p.m., on motion of Mr. Lawrence, of Louisiana, the 
Convention adjourned sine die. 

R. P. McGregor, 

President. 
G. T. Dougherty, 

Recording Secretary. 



36 Proceedings of the First 



APPENDIX- 



Note. — By the resolution adopted by the National Executive Committee, the 
Recording Secretary was directed to publish in the form of an appendix to this 
Report such papers as had been prepared expressly for this occasion, but fail- 
ed to have a chance given for their delivery. 



PLEA FOE A DEAF-MUTE COLONY. 

BY E. P. HOLMES, OF NEBRASKA. 

"Whereas, The necessity exists for deaf-mutes to take 
some action for bettering their condition as a class, and for 
putting themselves into such a condition that their labor may 
be remunerative, and at the same time, of such a nature as to 
be agreeable and possible for them to perform ; 

Whereas, There are now open for actual settlers, either by 
" Homestead," " Pre-emption," or " Timber Culture Entry," large 
tracts of rich and valuable land within the reach of every person 
of lawful age, and for but trifling expenses, considering the 
value of the land; therefore, be it 

Resolved, That this Convention take the proper steps to 

organize a society to be known as for the 

purpose of locating a colony of deaf-mutes somewhere in the 
Western States or Territories, where suitable location may be 
found and where government land is yet limited to entry. 

Ladies and Gentlemen : — In addressing you to-day, I want 
to introduce a subject that has long impressed me as one of 
great importance, and one of deep interest to all. We have 
convened to discuss any and all subjects that will advance us 
as a class. Indeed we may consider that this Convention of 
Deaf-Mutes has double and treble importance and significance. 
When a Political convention is called, or Eeligious, or Medical, 
their respective subjects are the sole topics discussed, 
while here the points are many, and as important as numerous. 
I have received letters from - Eastern mutes inquiring 
as to the feasibility of making "Western homes. Before 
entering largely on that subject, I want first to denounce in the 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 37 

strongest terms the practice of so many of all classes (for it is 
not confined to deaf-mutes by any means) of getting some little 
thing of but trifling worth or use, and tramping over the country 
here and there, thinking their misfortune is a surety of notice — 
the notice perhaps of a severe comment as to the makeshifts 
resorted to for a mere living. Of course this refers to such as 
are strong and able bodied, for I would not willingly cast the 
shadow of censure on those who, in spite of their infirmities and 
physical disabilities, do what they can, be it ever so trifling. 
One reason for so many taking up various light and easy occupa- 
tions, changing from this to that, instead of following the one 
business for which they have qualified themselves, is the fact 
that many who undertake any branch of profession do not 
thoroughly master it, and unfortunately the opinions of mankind 
are of tener founded on the failures of our fellows than by the 
success of such as excel. So as a class we are compelled to seek 
long and fruitlessly for occupations that we could easily fill satisfac- 
torily, if as a rule we become experts. We do not sufficiently : 
realize the importance of perfecting ourselves in whatever branch! 
of industry we undertake, and above all decide on some one thing 
and stick to it. Then, too, the question comes, how and where 
may we find opportunities .to put our proficiency to the test? Of 
course, it will take time to overcome the prejudices felt against 
inefficient deaf-mutes, and we must confess that, because of our 
misfortune, the difficulty and delay of communication makes it 
all the more necessary that all the disadvantages be overbalanced 
by a rapid and thorough ability to do whatever we undertake. 
But we may not hope for all these things in the overcrowded, over- 
supplied cities of the East. We want homes, and the homes of 
our own making are the dearest homes of all, and without abun- 
dant means, which we may not hope to have under the acknowl- 
edged disadvantages referred to, we must seek elsewhere, and 
that brings us to this subject of Western homes. The opportunity 
all have of securing good homes under the" Homestead," "Pre- 
emption,'' or Timber Culture laws — in the most beautiful and 
prospective portions of our country at but little expense — is as 
great an inducement to the Deaf-Mutes as to any other class. 
We are socially inclined, and of necessity desire or require society 
of our own class, where by education we have such easy and rapid 
means, of communication. Otherwise, we feel truly that we are 



38 Proceedings of the First 

excluded and marked out from so many of the pleasures and op- 
portunities of life. 

I have studied much in my mind the advantages and dis- 
advantages of the forming of a colonization society of deaf-mutes 
—not on a limited scale, but on a solid basis — meaning business. 
No speculative scheme whereby a few may make a fortune, but a 
plan that will enable the mutes to go strong-handed, clear-headed, 
united and glad of heart, to build themselves homes. With this 
in view, let some site be chosen with such natural advantages as 
shall meet the tastes and requirements of all that may go, let 
such as have perfected themselves in the different branches of in- 
dustry, be with us or come to us as the case may require. Many 
who would gladly be farmers, the very best or most successful 
too, had they only the land to till, and prove what they might 
do, could hy either one of the three laws referred to, secure 160 
acres of land — a few starting out together, and locating and im- 
proving their farms, would soon be a nucleus for a town, creating 
a demand for others of different callings and professions, to fol- 
low — mechanics, painters, tradesmen, printers, etc. Many, if not 
all, of the different enterprises that go to make a thriving prosper- 
ous community, could be carried on by deaf-mutes. They could 
have their own schools in time, their chapel and Sunday services 
always; for with God we prosper, without Him we fail. Let this 
colonization society be recognized in the different Institutions, 
and have it an incentive to more thorough workmanship in all 
departments of industry. 

Do not have it understood that speaking people are excluded. 
Indeed, such as have had interests in common with deaf-mutes, 
and have acquired alphabetical and sign-language would be doubly 
welcomed. Then, too, there are are many things that we would, of 
necessity, have to pass over to the speaking people. We would 
hope to have railroads, mills, factories, etc., which it would 
be unsafe and impossible for us to undertake. But in all, or 
nearly all, pertaining to agriculture, fruit and grain raising, 
grazing, feeding of stock, gardening, dairy, poultry, etc., we 
could be at home, and for all I can see there is no reason why we 
should not excel ; and I must not omit the compliment and 
praise so justly due to the women ever ready and willing, gladly 
too as seamstress, housewife and teacher. I have offered the 
Resolutions, and have given you what I deem the strong points. I 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 39 

have not mentioned locality, lest you may think I am working for 
some individual interests or land holders, which is not the case. 
I invite remarks and discussion, and, if advisable, that you take 
action on the Resolutions offered. 



IMPORTANCE OF ASSOCIATION AMONG MUTES FOR 
MUTUAL IMPROVEMENT. 

BY THEO. A. PROEHLICH, OF NEW YORK. 

The long anticipated National Convention has become a fact, 
and we see in this hall an assemblage of people to whom God 
in his wisdom has denied the faculty of articulate speech ; but 
in whose behalf He has given inspiration to men like Abbe de 
l'Epee, Heinecke, Clerc, the Gallaudets and many others, to 
invent systems of communication by hand and mouth, and thus 
assuage, mitigate and ameliorate this defect. 

No language, however eloquent, is adequate to express our 
obligations to those generous and benevolent men for their 
exertions to bring within the pale of the human family beings 
who before their time were regarded as outcasts from society. 

As one of the delegates of the Manhattan Literary Association 
of Deaf -Mutes, of New York, I crave the indulgence of the 
Convention to a few remarks in regard to the importance of 
association of deaf-mutes for mutual improvement. As my ap- 
pointment for delegate dates but a few days back, it left me but 
little time for preparation, and my remarks m;iy therefore not 
be so well elaborated as could be wished, and I beg therefore 
your leniency. 

So far as I understand, the object of this Convention, it is to 
bring the deaf-mutes of the different sections of the United 
States in close contact and to deliberate on the needs of 
deaf-mutes as a class by themselves. 

As deaf-mutes among the other inhabitants of this country, 
we have interests peculiar to ourselves, and which can be taken 
care of by ourselves. 

But to attain the ability to intelligently administer our affairs, 
it is necessary that we fully understand our language ; to which 
end we must learn the full import and weight of words and their 
proper application, in which the greater part of our community 



40 Proceedings of the First 

is sadly deficient. By such acquisition, we become enabled to 
give ample expression to our needs and to enter the arena of 
active life with honor and benefit to ourselves, thus best show- 
ing our appreciation of the efforts made in our behalf by 
philanthropists. 

This object of making us capable to enter upon all vocations 
of life, I think, can best be gained by fostering and forming 
associations, where an interchange of thoughts tending to 
improve the intellectual faculties, can be exercised ; and where 
those of higher attainments may be able to impart their 
knowledge to the less favored ones and thus give opportunity to 
all for improvement. 

The Manhattan Literary Association has endeavored, . since 
its formation, which took place through the efforts of. Kev. 
Dr. Thomas Gallaudet and Mr. John Carlin, in 1865, to enter 
upon such a course, as the preamble to its Constitution indicates, 
to wit : 

"With the view of developing and advancing the mental 
1 "faculties of the Deaf and Dumb, of cultivating the art of 
" oratory and debate, and of exercising a good moral influence 
'•' by social intercourse, we, the members of the Manhattan 
" Literary Association, do mutually agree to form a literary 
" society of deaf-mutes of New York and vicinity, &c, &c." 

The attempt to carry out this end on the part of association 
whom Mr. John Wilkinson and myself have the honor to repre- 
sent as delegates to this Convention, has so far exercised good 
and beneficial influence among the deaf-mutes of the City of New 
York and vicinity. 

But the Convention, by laying stress upon the subject, by re- 
commending such unions and associations, will certainly produce 
much better and far reaching results. 

Hoping that these few words may give an impetus to the 
consideration of the subject, I leave the same in the hands of 
the Convention for discussion. 



National .DeJaf -Mute Convention. 41 



LIST OF MEMBERS OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION. 



Angle, Charles. H Topeka Kansas. 

At wood, R. H Beverly Mass. 

Barrick, J Cincinnati Ohio. 

Booth, Edmund Anamosa Iowa. 

Bronson, George E Franklin .Indiana. 

Can-, Wash Dayton Ohio. 

Can-away, C. W Jackson Mississippi. 

Cately, Frank Cincinnati Ohio. 

Chapin, E. L Romney West Va. 

Chappel, W. L Springfield Illinois. 

Cook, Miss L. M Cincinnati Ohio. 

Davidson, W. G Talladega Alabama. 

Davis, A. B Sandusky Ohio. 

Dougherty, George T St. Louis Missouri. 

Emery, P. A Chicago Illinois. 

Emery, Mrs. P. A Ch icago Illinois. 

Englehardt, P. S Milwaukee. , Wisconsin. 

Fessenbach, Miss Carrie. . . .Cincinnati Ohio. 

Fosdick, Chas. D Louisville Kentucky. 

Fox, Thomas F New York City. New York. 

Freeman, S. M Cave Spring .... Georgia. 

Froehlich, Theodore A New York City. New York. 

Gallagher, J. E Chicago Illinois. 

George, D. W Chicago Illinois. 

George, Mrs. D. W Chicago Illinois. 

Gibson, Edward Louisville Kentucky. 

Gibson, J. E Portsmouth Ohio. 

Gilchrist, Miss Jennie Lincoln Illinois. 

Gilmore, James N Cleveland Ohio. 

Glasco, Henry Jeffersonville . . .Indiana. 

Goldman, J. R Midddletown — Ohio. 

Gray, Miss L. Newport Kentucky. 



42 Proceedings of the First 

Guss, William E Philadelphia. . ..Penn. 

Hanson, Mrs. Alice Oberlin Ohio. 

Harris, Innis Polo ,.. .Illinois. 

Harris, Mrs. Innis Polo Illinois. 

Hartley, George W Pittsburg Penn. 

Hays, A. D Romney West Va. 

Herr, E. Louisville Kentucky. 

Heyman, Moses New York City.New York. 

Hodgson, E. A New York City. New York. 

Hoge, J. A Talladega Alabama. 

Holland, Miss Hallie West Alexandra. Ohio. 

Holmes, E. P Nebraska City. .Nebraska. 

Holmes, Geo. A Boston Mass. 

Houghton, Louis A Knoxville Tennessee. 

Johnson, W. S Talladega Alabama. 

Kerr, Marcus H Jackson Michigan. 

Kingon, Edward D Chicago Illinois. 

Kohlmetz, Albert H St. Louis Missouri. 

Larson, Lars M Springville Wisconsin. 

Lawrence, R. B Morgan City. . . .Louisiana. 

Lewis, Elmer St. Joseph Illinois. 

Mann, A. W Cleveland Ohio. 

Mann, Elliot Dayton Ohio. 

Martin, A. M Little Rock Arkansas. 

McGill, John M Baltimore Maryland. 

McGill, Mrs. John M Baltimore Maryland. 

McGregor, R. P Cincinnati Ohio. 

McKim, Miss Belle Madison Ohio. 

Meyer, Christian Cleveland Ohio. 

Meyer, Mrs. Christian Cleveland Ohio. 

Norris, A. J Memphis Tennessee. 

Pratt, P. P Columbus Ohio. 

Raffington, Mrs. J. M Chicago Illinois. 

Read, Frank Jacksonville. . . .Illinois. 

Reiniger, Joseph H Portsmouth Ohio. 

Rider, H. C Mexico New York. 

Roberts, Osceola Talladega Alabama. 

Robinson, Miss Hattie Sycamore Illinois. 

Schoolfield, G. T Danville Kentucky. 

Siegman, J. J Utica New York. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 43 

Smith, Miss Grace Cleveland Ohio. 

Smith, Eussell . . . .Blair Nebraska. 

Turner, Job Staunton Virginia. 

Turner, Thomas Clifton Ohio. 

Vail, Sidney J Indianapolis. . . .Indiana. 

Waite, Selah Jacksonville . . ..Illinois. 

White, Harry Boston Mass. 

Wilkinson, J New York City. New York. 

Wolfe, John H St. Louis Missouri. 



fc 



DR. 



TREASURER'S ACCOUNT. 



CR. 



Aug. 26. By amount cash collected 




Aug, 26. To bill for rent room at Gibson House, 
Cincinnati, O., for Committee. . . . 

Aug, 20. To one book, rules and street-car fare, 
Committee 

Aug. 26. To bill for expenses of Local Com- 
mittee 

Aug. 30. To one book for Treasurer 

Balance in liand 



$5 00 

75 

4 35 

50 

64-40 



$75 00 



K. B. LAWRENCE, 

Treasurer. 



^3 



=5 



9 

3' 



o 
3 



PROCEEDINGS 











NEW YORK CITY, 



AUGUST 28TH, 29TH, AND 30TH, 1883. 




New YorK : 
Printed at the New York Institution for the Deaf and Dumb. 

1884. 



OFFICERS. 



PRESIDENT, 

EDWIN A. HODGSON, NEW YOEK. 

VICE-PRESIDENTS, 

T. L. BKOWN, MICH., W. H. WEEKS, CONN. 
GEO. STEENKOD, W. VA., W. HOUSTON, PENN. 

CORRESPONDING SECRETARY, 

HARRY WniTE, MASSACHUSETTS. 

RECORDING SECRETARY, 

THOMAS F. POX, NEW YORK. 

TREASURER, 

DUDLEY W. GEORGE, ILLINOIS. 



National Executive Committee. 

T. A. Froehlich, N. Y. D. S. Rogers, S. C. 

J. T. Elwell, Pa. Thos. Brown, N. H. 

Robert Patterson, Ohio. Hiram P. Hunt, Me. 

D. W. George, III. T. L. Brown, Mich. 

G. T. Dougherty, Mo. W. McDougall, N. J. 

S. J. Vail, Ind. Jas. S. Wells, Md. 

G. A. Holmes, Mass. G. W. Steenrod, W. Va. 

W. H. Weeks, Conn. Rev. Job Turner, Va. 

Oscar Kinsman, R. I. J. K. T. Hoagland, Ky. 



PROCEEDINGS 



Second National Convention. 



TUESDAY, AUGUST 28. — MORNING SESSION. 

The convention assembled at ten o'clock a.m., and came to 
order at the call of the President, Mr. E. P. McGregor, of 
Columbus, 0. 

Bev. Job Turner, of Virginia, was introduced and prayed 
that the spirit of gentleness and peace would rest over the 
convention, and that such good would come of the deliberations 
as would improve the condition of all deaf-mutes. 

The regular proceedings were then opened by the President, 
who, addressing the assembly, dwelt upon the success which 
followed the first convention, the usefulness of the organization, 
and the encouraging prospects which the future presented. 

As the Eecording Secretary, Mr. Geo. T. Dougherty, Missouri, 
was not present, Mr. Thomas F. Fox, New York, was chosen 
Secretary pro tern. Mr. D. W. George, Illinois, was chosen 
temporary Treasurer. On motion of Mr. E. A. Hodgson, New 
York, the Chair appointed an enrollment Committee of five 
members, consisting of D. S. Eogers, South Carolina, S. J. Vail, 
Indiana, D. W. George, Illinois, T. L. Brown, Michigan, T. F. 
Driscoll, New York. 

In order to give the committee time to perform their duties, a 
recess was taken for the enrollment of members. 

At eleven-forty-five o'clock the recess ended, and business pro- 
ceeded. The Secretary read the roll, 129 members answering to 



6 Proceedings of the Second 

their names. Mr. W. A. Bond, New York, Chairman of the Lo- 
cal Committee, reported a list of gentlemen to act as ushers in the 
hall daring the meetings of the convention, as follows: — Messrs. 
G. L. Reynolds, J. F. O'Brien, I. N. Soper, J. F. Donnelly, W. 
Grinnon, F. Klingman. 

The President announced the next business to be the election 
of officers. 

Mr. T. A. Froehlich, New York, moved that the Chair ap- 
point a committee of five on permanent officers, to report at 
3 p.m. Subsequently this was amended by Mr. H. White, 
Massachusetts, changing the hour to 2 p.sr.i after which it was 
adopted. Mr. G. Homer, Massachusetts, objected to having the 
elections so soon, and suggested that they be postponed till 
Wednesday. The Chair replied that the gentleman might 
offer a resolution to that effect at the afternoon session. A dis- 
cussion arose as to whether the Committee should select one or 
two lists of candidates for the various offices. The Chair 
ruled that one ticket was sufficient, and in case the candidates 
were not satisfactory, other names could be offered in opposition. 
At this point the excitement became so great that the Chair 
closed the debate, and commenced preparing the list of gentle- 
men to form the Committee 

While the President was engaged in naming the Committee, 
Mr. W. A. Bond, New York, spoke of the necessity of meeting 
the expenses of the hall. He asked that the Treasurer be em- 
powered to settle with the proprietor by noon. Agreed to. 

Rev. Mr. Chamberlain, New York, spoke of a letter he had 
received from Rev. Thomas Gallaudet, D.D., in which the 
latter gentleman offered to have exhibited to the Convention, a 
silver pitcher and tray presented to his father in 1850, by the 
deaf-mutes of New England. 

The Committee on Permaneut Organization was then appoint- 
ed by the Chairman, as follows :— Thomas Brown, New Hamp- 
shire, J. K. T. Hoagland, Kentucky, George Steenrod, Weat 
Virginia, T. A. Froehlich, New York, T. L. Brown, Michigan. 
A recess was taken till two o'clock in the afternoon to allow the 
committee time for action. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 1 

AFTERNOON. 

At two o'clock in the afternoon, President McGregor called 
the meeting to order, and announced that the convention was 
ready for the report of the Committee on Permanent Officers. 
As the report was not forthcoming, letters of regret were laid 
before the convention, and, by unanimous consent, were read by 
the Secretary. 

FROM HON. MAYOR EDSON. 

" Mayor's Office, > 

" New York, 22 August, 1883. \ 
"John Wilkinson, Esq.: 

" Dear Sir: — The Mayor directs me to thank you for your invitation 
addressed to him to open the Convention of Deaf-Mntes at Lyric Hall, 
August 28th, at ten o'clock in the morning, and to express to you his re- 
grets that the nature of his official engagements will prevent his accept- 
ance. 

" Respectfully yours, 

"Wm. E. Lucas, Secretary." 



FROM REV. THOMAS GALLAUDET, D.D. 

"Dover, England, August 11, 1883. 

' ' To the Officers and Members of the National Convention of 
Deaf-Mctes: 
•" My Dear Friends : — I regret exceedingly that attendance on tbe 
International Convention of Teachers of Deaf-Mutes, to be held in Brus- 
sels on the 13th of August, will deprive me of the pleasure of being present 
at the sessions of your convention to be held in tbe city of New Jfork in 
the latter part of this month. 

" Praying our Heavenly Father to bless your deliberations so that much 
may be accomplished to promote the temporal and spiritual welfare of the 
deaf-mutes of our country, I am 

" Yours very sincerely, 

"Thomas Gallaudet." 



PROM MR. EDMUND BOOTH. 

" Anamosa, Iowa, August 22, 1883. 

" To the President of the Second National Convention of 
Deaf-Mdtes, New York: — I would gladly be with you all on tbis occa- 



8 Proceedings of the Second 

eios, and can only plead age and the distance combined as an apology for 
non-attendance. With sincere and best wishes for the harmony and sac- 
cess of your meeting, I am 

" Very respectfully, 

"E. Booth." 



FROM MISS AKGIE FULLER. 

"Savanna, III., August 23, 1883. 

"To the President, Assistant Officers and Members of the 
Second American National Deaf-Mcte Convention : 

" Dear Friends: — Very heartily do I greet you, very sincerely do 1 
congratulate you upon the merciful Providence which has permitted this 
your second assemblage. Very ardently do I hope that your meeting 
throughout may be profitably enjoyable; and it assuredly will be, if each 
member, official and lay, studies to make self-interest subservient to tht* 
welfare of the majority. 

" Gladly would I be one of your favored number ; but my time for such 
expensive pleasure has not come, so I keep my place among the large com- 
pany of our people who tarry at home to keep the great wheel of daily toil 
moving steadily round, the while often thinking of you, not with a 
jealous dissatisfaction, but with a kindly God speed for all proceedings 
whereby you may aim to secure the good of our class, already so advanced 
beyond what was once thought within the range of possibilities, yet with 
so very much to do in the way of resolute efforts, ere the lengths, the 
breadths, and the happy heights of capabilities and privileges are 
attained. 

" Hoping each day comprised in the period of your meeting will here- 
after be the proudly named date of some issue widely beneficial to us all, 
commend you to our Heavenly Father's loving care, and remain 

" Truly your friend, 

" Anoie Fuller." 



The Committee on Organization being still out, Mr. W. G. 
Jones entertained the assembly with pantomimic representa- 
tions. Upon his conclusion, Mr. F. Klingman, New York, 
made a motion that the President appoint four tellers to collect 
and count the ballots cast for officers. At this point the Com- 
mittee on Permanent Officers entered, and Mr. Klingman's mo- 
tion was not voted on. 

The Committee submitted their report, which was read by 
Mr. T. L. Brown, Michigan. It recommended the following 
list for permanent officers : — 

For President, E. A. Hodgson, New York ; 1st Vice-Preai- 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 9 

dent, R. Patterson, Ohio ; 2d Vice-President, G. Steenrod, 
West Virginia; 3d Vice-President, G. A. Holmes, Massachu- 
setts ; 4th Vice-President, W. Houston, Pennsylvania ; for Cor- 
responding Secretary, H. White, Massachusetts ; for Record- 
ing Secretary, T. P. Fox, New York ; for Treasurer, D. W. 
George, Illinois. 

Mr. Patterson, Ohio, declined the nomination of first Vice- 
President. Mr. G. L. Reynolds, New York, presented the 
name of H. C. Rider, New York, for President, but after some 
delay the latter gentleman declined. The name of Mr. Patter- 
eon, Ohio, was offered by Mr. Bond, New York. Mr. Patterson 
deciined, as did also Mr. Hoagland, Kentucky. 

Mr. Hodgson, N. Y., rose to a personal explanation. He 
stated that he did not seek the nomination, but would not object 
to being a candidate. He thought the gentlemen were out of 
order in declining an office until they were elected to it, and 
cited the case of General Garfield at the Chicago Convention. 
He was not at all anxious to shoulder the trouble and responsi- 
bility which the duties of the presiding office entailed, and was 
perfectly willing to withdraw his name. This was strenuously 
objected to by signs of "No, No!" Mr. White, Mass., pre- 
sented the name of Mr. R. P. McGregor, 0., who emphatically 
declined to be a candidate. 

A motion was made by Mr. Rider, N. Y., that the ticket pre- 
sented by the Committee be ratified by acclamation. 

There was a lively debate at this point. Mr. Hodgson urged 
that as the ticket was broken by Mr. Patterson declining to serve 
as vice-president, it would be necessary to ballot for each officer 
separately. m His protest was not heeded, and a vote being taken, 
the ticket was elected by a majority of 91 to 30. Mr. Patterson 
here formally declined to accept office, and Mr. Hodgson again 
renewed his demand that each candidate be voted for separately. 

On motion of Mr. Fox, N. Y., it was decided to take a stand- 
ing vote on each candidate for election. 

The voting commenced with the ballot for President. For 
this office Mr. Hodgson received an almost unanimous vote of 
the convention. The other officers, with the exception of the 
3d Vice-Pi'esident, were chosen without much opposition. The 
following is a list of the officers elected : — 



10 Proceedings of the Second 

officers : 

E. A. Hodgson, - - President. 

T. L. Brown, - ■ - 1st Vice-President. 

G. Steenrod, - - 2d Vice-President. 

W. H. Weeks, - - - 3d Vice-President. 

W. Houston, - - - 4th Vice-President. 

H. White, - - - Corresponding Secretary. 

T. F. Fox, - - - Recording Secretary. 

D. W. George, ... Treasurer. 

Mr. Hodgson was escorted to the chair by Messrs. Steenrod 
and Rogers, amid much enthusiasm. In a few well-chosen words 
he expressed his acknowledgment of the honor conferred upon 
him, and promised to endeavor to discharge his duties with im- 
partiality and fidelity. 

Mr. Fox took his place as Recording Secretary. A com- 
munication was read from Ex-Treasurer R. B. Lawrence, of 
Louisiana, Treasurer of the First Convention. His statement of 
money received and expended showed a balance of sixteen dol- 
lars to the credit of the Association. 

Mr. D. W. George, of Illinois, moved that the chair appoint a 
committee of five on Papers. Mr. T. L. Brown, of Michigan, 
suggested that the committee consist of two ladies and three 
gentlemen. However, no ladies could be found to serve, and Mr. 
George's motion having been approved, the Chair appointed : 
R. P. McGregor, of Ohio ; D. S. Rogers, of South Carolina ; S. 
J. Vail, of Indiana ; G. L. Reynolds, of New York ; C. Q. 
Mann, of New York. 

Mr. W. G. Jones, of New York, moved a vote of thanks to 
the retiring officers. Adopted. 

Mr. F. R. Stryker, of New York, moved that the convention 
adjourn till 10 o'clock Wednesday morning. 

The motion prevailed, and the meeting adjourned. 



WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 29. — MORNING SESSION. 

President Hodgson called the Convention to order at 10:30 
a.m. Prayer was offered by Rev. John Chamberlain, of St.. 
Ann's Church, New York City. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 11 

The Chair announced that the rules of order for the guidance 
of the proceedings would be same as adopted at the last conven T 
tion, as set forth in " Webster's Manual." Non-members who 
so desired, were invited to enroll their names before the opening 
of the regular business. 

The Secretary read the following letter : — 

FROM THE CHICAGO MUTE CIRCLE. 

"To the National Deaf-Mute Convention : 

" As we all can fully recognize your great and important work to do 
much. good for the intellectual and industrial welfare of tlie deaf and 
dumb, not only in our whole country, but in the civilized world, we un- 
animously greet you one and all, with our earnest hope that whatever 
may be done in your meetings will prove good and beneficial to the peo- 
ple of silence. 

" We, who live too far in the West to come, will all be with you in 
spirit and prayers as brethren in love and harmony, and all join in sending 
our heartfelt congratulations for your firm and right stand in the. general 
interest and welfare of all the deaf." 

The chair exhibited a letter from Mr. C. W. Carraway, Mis- 
sissippi, addressed to Mr. Johnson, of Alabama. The latter 
gentleman was not present, and the chair enquired if there wa3 
any delegate from Alabama, since if there <vas none, he was in- 
structed to open the letter. No response was made, and the 
chair asked the pleasure of the convention concerning the 
letter. 

Mr. Wilkinson, New York, moved that it be referred to the 
Committee on Papers ; seconded by Mr. Bond, New York, and 
adopted. Subsequently, the Committee on Papers reported 
through their chairman that they could do nothing with the 
letter, and would not present it for discussion. 

Upon request of Mr. Fischer, Connecticut, the chair made 
announcement of "The Venture," a collection of poems by 
Miss Angie Fuller, of Savanna, Illinois. 

The Secretary read the list of new members, which increased 
the total number to 165. 

As the Executive Committee still remained in secret session, 
Mr., Fox's paper on the " Social Status of the Deaf " was de- 
clared to be in order. Mr. Bond, New York, moved that Rev. 



12 Proceedings, of .the Second 

Mr. Chamberlain be invited to interpret it orally for the benefit 
of hearing visitors. Passed. 

Mr. Fox was introduced, and delivered his paper in signs, 
Rev. Mr. Chamberlain interpreting. 



"SOCIAL STATUS OF THE DEAF." 

BY THOMA8 F. POX, NEW YORK. 

Progress recognizes the objects of her care in all the pathways 
of existence. Scattered and varied as the views of life itself, 
she seeks them and obviates the ills to which they may be ex- 
posed. Keeping apace with the ages as they roll by, she shows 
her genius in the wonderful changes of the human condition. 

Thus it is that in the lapse of time we view improvements 
which have been effected in the condition of the deaf; not all 
at once or without painful effort, but gradually and successfully 
until the problem of deaf-mute instruction is well nigh solved. 
In the midst of society we behold schools, with competent in- 
structors, for their moral, intellectual and social welfare, where 
once they were permitted to grow up uncared for and in a piti- 
ful condition of ignorance. 

Considering more particularly the change in their social 
state we discover, without much effort, the vast difference ex- 
isting between the deaf-mutes of the past and those of the pres- 
ent day. There is little need to call attention to the opinions 
which prevailed in the early days of deaf-mute instruction, when 
the silent and speechless were looked upon as uncouth specimens 
of human nature; when they were believed to know but little 
concerning the world around them, and could, consequently, have 
no business transactions nor any links of sympathy with the sur- 
rounding population; when they were regarded as forming a 
distinct and secluded community, their deafness precluding all 
communication with others. 

That such opinions prevailed in former times is hardly to be 
wondered at, when we remember in those days an educated deaf- 
mute was a rarity. Schools were not then flourishing ; the very 
science of deaf-mute instruction was as yet undeveloped, or at 
best in its earliest infancy. However, at the present day such 
absurd notions regarding the deaf are no longer tolerated ; they 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 13 

have given way to more enlightened ideas. Occasionally people 
will be met with who still cherish the old opinion concerning the 
deaf and dumb, but they form but a small class whose acquain- 
tance with the capabilities of the deaf is too limited to qualify 
them to pass judgment. Still 1 am inclined to believe that, in 
some cases, deaf-mutes have themselves to blame that they are 
not more highly regarded by the hearing world about them. 
Instead of cultivating a spirit of true manliness and self reliance, 
they are willing to be treated as inferiors. Many appear to have 
the notion that because of their infirmity the world must give 
them a better chance than is accorded to those with all their 
senses. These are selfishly false views, which can reflect no 
credit on any deaf-mute by whom they are held. We are no 
distinctive class, and we do ourselves injustice in supposing that 
we are a distinct race of beings on account of our deafness. We 
happen to be the victims of circumstances, and since we differ 
from other people, only in opportunities, noneof us should expect 
any return for what we may do, unless the work we perform 
constitutes a full return for the value received. Our purpose 
should be to endeavor and rise above our physical infirmity and 
struggle against the adverse circumstances resulting from our 
deafness. This it is impossible for us to do, provided always 
that we make proper use of the intellectual and mechanical in- 
struction which the various institutions afford their pupils. 
There can be nothing so debasing as the use of a misfortune to 
obtain such favors as will enable one to shirk the fatigue of 
manual labor. In contrast to this it is an ennobling spectacle 
to behold a man overcome formidable obstacles, ask no favor 
from any one, and earn his bread by honest industry. Most of 
us who are-graduates of State institutions, have been provided 
with means of earning a livelihood, and have been taught by pre- 
cept and example to expect no more than we are entitled to, and 
have earned through our honest endeavors. 

There is one point to which we can not give too serious atten- 
tion when seeking employment — viz., the mode in which we em- 
ploy our talents. Most trades, and a good many of the profes- 
sions, are open to us, and we have living examples of deaf-mutes 
successful as artists, editors, teachers, and even lawyers. Still 
there are a few, who, though blessed with bodily health and an 
education, prefer to rely on their deafness as a pretext for seek- 



14 Proceedings of the Second 

ing charity. People generally know so little Of the disabilities 
under which we labor that it is an easy matter to impose upon 
their generosity. What a strange sight is an able-bodied, fairly- 
educated man who uses his deafness as a means of subsistence. 
The sooner the hearing world understands that we, who are edu- 
cated, can support ourselves, the better it will be for the com- 
munity. However, it is not my intention here to allude to the 
few exceptional cases where a mute, by reason of ill health or 
other causes over which he lias no control, is Hnable to follow his 
trade or profession, and so is forced to seek the liberalities of the 
charitably inclined ; cases like these call for and are entitled to 
the sympathy and assistance of every benevolent heart. 

The only other valid excuse that can be urged for pursuing 
such a calling, is that, in some of the institutions the system of 
trade instruction is such as to result in producing workmen who 
know little or nothing of the occupation they attempt to follow. 
The consequence is they are either unable to retain their places, 
or else must commence all over again. We know this to be so, 
and the remedy would seem to lie in a more carefully devised me- 
thod of teaching trades in institutions. The ruling idea in the 
institutions is to make the industrial education of the pupils a 
source of pecuniary profit, without due regard to their improve- 
ment. So long as they turn out tolerable good work, nO fur- 
ther care seems to be given to the matter. While there is no 
doubt as to the importance of this part of his education to a 
deaf-mute, it is still the fact that it is often badly neglected, 
both on the part of the pupil as well as of the teacher. To pro- 
duce workmen competent to support themselves and able to com- 
pete successfully with the most skillful, it is necessary that ex- 
pert teachers be employed as instructors. They should not only 
be able to teach the simpler rudiments of their trades, but able 
and willing to impart the secret of their skill. In my opinion, it 
seems wise to have, as teachers, where it is practicable, those 
who are familar with r the difficulties under which deaf-mutes 
labor, and so better prepared to instruct them. These teachers 
can occasionally be met within the graduates of the institutions, 
who, from their sympathy and personal associations, become 
naturally the best instrnctors, provided they are masters of the 
trades they profess to teach. Supplied with all the contrivances 
of the trade and not stinted in appropriations for improved tools 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 15 

and appliances, such teachers would certainly turn out workmen 
who would reflect credit upon the institutions from which they 
came. 

One of the worst evils resulting from the custom of deaf-mutes 
peddling cardB and the like, is the impostors who foster them- 
selves upon the community under the plea of being deaf. That 
people should regard it only natural for the deaf to secure a liv- 
ing by these means, is certainly no credit to us. In fact, public 
opinion is thus influenced unfavorably toward the deaf, and a 
popular prejudice thus formed, nothing is so difficult as to over- 
throw it. 

Having received an education and learned a trade at the ex- 
pense of the State, we certainly owe a debt that we are bound to 
pay as honorable and useful members of society. But it is only 
by purging our class of all improper practices, and by prov- 
ing ourselves as worthy of esteem that we can hope for any such 
results. Our deafness in itself is no barrier, provided our 
characters axe unimpeachable and our callings respectable. In 
truth, I think our loss rather favors us in obtaining social re- 
cognition than otherwise. Few, indeed, can be found so rude or 
unkind as to slight a man for his misfortune. On the contrary, 
it will be found to be generally true that a deaf-mute of pleas- 
ant manners and worthy character will receive all the attention 
in society he could command with the faculty of speech and 
hearing. Often, indeed, it will be greater, for it is an exhibition 
of sympathy, which, while it supposes neither pity nor depend- 
ence, is alike grateful to those that bestow it and those that 
•receive it. The cases of deafness are so few in the whole popula- 
tion, that from motives of curiosity, at least> the mute will rare- 
ly find himself alone or neglected, even among strangers. The 
novel method of communication by writing, the desire to observe 
the thoughts and feelings of a mind deprived of the ordinary 
means of utterance, will rarely fail to secure him the pleasure of 
an intellectual and social intercourse. Moreover the manual 
alphabet is pretty well known among speaking people, who, as a 
rule, are not averse to showing their proficiency in its use. I 
am, therefore, inclined to advocate the more frequent,mingling 
of the deaf in the social pleasures of their hearing friends. Not, 
however, to the exclusion of intercourse with their fellow mutes, 
for experience has taught us that we are more at our ease among 



16 Proceedings of the Second 

onrselves than in the most selected hearing society, the argu- 
ments of certain teachers to the contrary notwithstanding. 

Taking every thing into consideration, il will appear that we 
are no more excluded from society by the accident of deafness 
than we are exempt from its requirements as law-abiding oiti- 
zens. With the favoring circumstances of an education and 
good manners, the misfortune of deafness diminishes in its 
magnitude, till it takes its place among the many ills of life, 
which, since they cannot be remedied, must be borne with pa- 
tience and fortitude. 



The Chair announced the paper open to discussion. Mr. 
Wilkinson, New York, asked that each speaker be limited to 
ten minutes. Agreed. 

Mr. Donnelly: — "I agree with what Mr. Fox has said. 
Probably this subject has heretofore not received the attention 
it deserves. The social status of the deaf is now far above the 
position it occupied years ago. One of the best instances of this 
fact is the interest manifested in this, the Second National Con- 
vention. We have delegates from every section of the United 
States, and their bearing and intelligence show thoroughly that 
deaf-mutes are now on a social level with their more fortunate 
brethren. Society no longer regards deaf-mutes as a people 
who arc debarred from taking part in the social eveuts that are 
forever taking place. 

" Deaf-mutes are no longer supposed to be subject to mere 
animal-like instincts, but it has been manifested that they are 
perfectly sensible to all the emotions that any person in full 
possession of his senses possesses. 

'• But still there is one tiling that the public dispense too free- 
ly. This is ' pity,' or ' charity,' as it may be called. For in- 
stance, take a deaf-mute criminal, who is brought up before the 
court. The clever and wily lawyer, in words of touching elo- 
quence tries to show the presiding justice that the deaf-mute is 
a being to be pitied. He is deaf and dumb. The crime should 
not be noticed, as the deaf-mute did not know better. Often the 
justice thus gets a mistaken idea of his duty. He reflects that 
the criminal is a deaf-mute. He is debarred from society, so 
reflects the justice. Society will gain nothing, if the deaf-mute 



National Deaf -Mute Convention. 17 

is imprisoned for the usual period of time for the offence. If he 
is let go without being punished, society will not suffer. Why ? 
Because the prisoner at the bar is a deaf-mute. Anyhow, it is no 
harm to let the criminal go. The thief, drunkard, or whatever 
he may be, is let go, and the next day out come the daily papers 
with something like this: — 

" 'Justice released the deaf-mute, who was brought up 

before him yesterday, on his plea that he did not know better. 
The prisoner appeared to be an intelligent young man, and con* 
versed freely with his lawyer by writing.' 

" So the prisoner appeared to be an ' intelligent young 
man,' but ' did not know better.' Pshaw ! such details make 
one sick. This should not be. It should be stopped. The so- 
cial standing of the deaf goes down, down, down, with such ac- 
tions. Deaf-mutes receive a liberal education. They know the 
difference between right and wrong. A deaf-mute criminal 
should be punished to the full extent of the law. No mercy 
should be shown — not a whit. The deaf-mute should not be 
allowed to continue his career of crime, preying on society and 
lowering the standing of our class. He should be tried fairly, 
and if found guilty, treated accordingly. His deafness does 
not prevent him continuing his pernicious calling, as soon 
as he is released by the " pitying" justice. This must be stop- 
ped ! Where justices or other court-officers have this mis- 
'taken notion, they should be set right. One bad deaf-mute 
must not be allowed to hurt the standing of a hundred of his 
•brethren. There are many and easy ways of preventing this 
misconception of the duty of a justice towards society as regards 
a deaf-mute criminal, but I leave the settlement of this to the 
Convention, who doubtless can find ways and means to settle it 
to the satisfaction of all — excepting, probably, the criminal." 

Mb. Hoagland. — "From personal observation, I am inclined 
to believe that in some instances respectable mutes, when out of 
employment, will pursue peddling for a while, intending to re- 
turn to their trade or profession when times are better. Gra- 
dually, however, they become fascinated with traveling, and 
their original timidity having been cast off, they keep on ped- 
dling through force of habit. I think that deaf-mute societies 
•should help deaf-mutes when out of work, and thus discourage 

them from peddling. 
2 



18 Proceedings of the Second 

"The different mute societies in the United States could form 
ii National Association for the mutual protection of its mem- 
bers. Among other things, they could correspond with each 
other through their Secretaries, and keep each other posted in 
regard to the movements of peddlers, beggars and impostors. 
Let societies in their respective cities and towns make arrange- 
ments of some sort with police courts, so that when a beggar or 
impostor is found and brought to court, some member of the so- 
piety will be on hand to give information concerning the pris- 
oner, whether he is worthy or not, and as to his being what he 
pretends to be. In this way, we might gradually get rid of im- 
postors, beggars, and all evilly-inclined deaf-mutes." 

At this point, a motion was made to close the discussion of 
Mr. Fox's paper, but failed. 

Mr. Wilkinson then took the floor, speaking mainly on the 
necessity of deaf-mutes becoming familiar with the modes of 
intercourse between speaking people, so that they may enjoy 
such intercourse to advantage. 

Mr. Elwell made a few remarks, giving it as his opinion that 
the status depended greatly on the amount and kind of train- 
ing the deaf received at the institutions. He alluded to the 
neglect of some institutions of affording their pupils skilled 
training in the trades, as this had much to do with their pecu- 
niary condition after leaving school, and thereby shaping their 
standing in society. He thought it was important that every 
possible facility should be afforded the pupil to become a skilled 
workman, able to support himself and to keep a place when 
once obtained. At present, it frequently happens that a mute 
loses his place, not from inattention to business, but from lack 
of knowledge of the details of the trade he is pursuing. 

Mr. Thomas Brown spoke of the difficulty of obtaining 
employment for deaf-mutes, on account of their lack of a suf- 
ficient knowledge of trades. He advocated a more careful 
teaching of trades, as the only remedy for curing the evil. 

Mr. George moved that the convention take a recess till two 
o'clock p.m., and that upon re-convening, the discussion of Mr. 
Fox's paper be resumed. Mr. Wilkinson wished to so amend 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 1 9 

the motion as to table all further discussion. The amendment 
was lost, and Mr. George's motion prevailed. 

At 12:20 the convention took a recess until 2 p.m. 



AFTERNOON. 

The session opened at 2:30 p.m., with the transaction of rou- 
tine business. The chair invited those wishing to become mem- 
bers to enroll at once. 

The original committee, consisting of Messrs. Thomas 
Brown, N". H. ; Rev. Job Turner, Va. ; George Homer, 
Mass., and J. P. Marsh, Conn., who, in 1850, presented to Dr. 
Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet a silver tray and pitcher in behalf 
of the deaf-mutes of New England, wore present, and were in- 
vited to seats on the platform, Messrs. McGregor, Jones, 
George and Vail, acting as escorts. Each member of the com- 
mittee made a short address, and was vigorously applauded. 

Mr. Patterson, 0., then presented a letter and resolutions 
from Mr. C. K. W. Strong, of Washington, ,D. 0. 

FROM C. K. W. STRONG. 

" TiiEAsuiii' Department, Register's Office ) 
" Avgust 24, 1884. <j 

" E. A. Hodgson, Es<j. : 

"Dear Sir: — I have the honor to hand the inclosed draft of my re- 
solutions concerning the Gallaudet Centennial Celebration, requesting 
that, as you deem proper, you introduce them for action in the Na- 
tional Convention of Deaf-Mutes, with your remarks in their favor. If 
objected, or amendments are necessary, you may have them referred to a 
select committee (appointed by the President), who will consider and 
report on the same. I hope that they may be reported and agreed to 
without amendment . 

"I regret much my inability to attend the convention. Hoping you 
will have a prosperous meeting, I remain, 

" Yours truly, 

Chas. K. W. Strong." 

ItlisOl.l'TlONS. 

Whereas, The centennial anniversary of the birthday of the founder 
of deaf-mute education in America, Eev. Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, 
D.D., will occur December 10th, 1887 ; and, 

Whereas, That coming event will be appropriately celebrated by 
deaf people with festivals, speeches, etc. ; therefore, 



20 Proceedings of the Second 

Resolved, That a bronze statue of said Gallaudet be erected on the 
grounds of the National Deaf-Mute College, Washington, District of 
Columbia. 

Resolved, That bronze medals be struck and sold, for the benefit of the 
statue fund, to any one who may desire to keep one as a souvenir, and 
that the head of the medal be engraved and printed on heavy letter paper, 
and be sent along with these souvenirs. 

Resoked, That a Commission of fifteen gentlemen of ability and intel- 
ligence shall be appointed by the President of the Second National Con- 
vention, to be denominated the Gallaudet Centennial Commission. 

Resolved, That said Commission shall be given discretionary powers to 
carry the above resolutions into effect, and to consider new proposi- 
tions that may be referred to them, and to carry them out as may seem to 
them expedient. 

Resolved, That said Commission shall appoint a Resident Executive 
Committee to raise money for that purpose. 

Mr. Bond moved that the letter and resolution be placed in 
the minutes. Seconded by Mr. McGregor, and adopted. 

It was decided that the National Executive Committee should 
constitute the Gallaudet Centennial Commission. Mr. George 
suggested that the National Committee should be selected from 
among prominent deaf-mutes from all sections of the country, 
whether present at the Convention or not. 

At three o'clock the discussion on Mr. Fox's paper was resum- 
ed. 

Mr. George : — " The discussion of Mr. Fox's paper has 
so far hinged mainly upon our status in the world of busi- 
ness with its various professions, trades and pursuits. It is 
gratifying to note the steady advance we have made towards 
securing recognition here, according to our ability, in spite 
of the alleged disadvantage of our deafness. Still, there is 
room for improvement here, and time will work it out as 
certainly in the future as it has done in the past. Surely 
we do not live in that barbarous age which looked upon the 
deaf-mute as bereft of those qualities which distinguished the 
human from the brute. Our condition now, unsatisfactory 
as it may seem, is a vast improvement upon this, and it gives 
promise of still further improvement. For our part, we have 
to — 

' Learn to labor and to wait.' 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 21 

" It may be well to turn our attention now to our status at 
home, among our kindred, near friends, and in society at 
large. It is from our social intercourse in these circles that 
we derive a large part of our happiness. Here we may be 
treated with the utmost kindness, so far as our mere phy- 
sical comfort is concerned, yet if there be no social inter- 
course, no exchange of thoughts, no communion of soul with 
soul, all this ministering unto our animal wants passes for 
naught, and the world would be as cold, cheerless and inhospi- 
table as "Greenland's icy mountains." We are sent to school 
during the best years of our childhood, and there we have 
friends who can readily communicate with us and can enter- 
tain us with all the conversation our spirit demands. There our 
minds are stored with daily supplies of knowledge and reflection. 
We are taught to read and write, and sometimes to speak. Then 
we are turned adrift into the ocean of humanity. Armed with 
a good education, we can hope to obtain a tolerable measure of 
success in our pursuit of happiness in social life, but without 
this our condition would be pitiable indeed. Yet, even the best 
educated of us complain that we do not receive our fair share of 
attention. There may be a variety of causes to account for this. 
It may be that our hearing associates do not understand how to 
accommodate themselves to our peculiar condition. It may be 
that our modes of communication by writing, signs, or lip-read- 
ing and articulation, call for extra effort, and are hence too 
troublesome or disagreeable. Or we may turn to ourselves for 
some of the causes. We may not understand how to maintain 
an interest in ourselves. We may perhaps be so unlike other 
people as to excite their curiosity and sometimes their disgust. 
We may not pay sufficient attention to the general style of con- 
versation that prevails among our hearing friends. We may not 
take sufficient pains to conform ourselves to their manners and 
habits of thought. Among them, we are as strangers in ancient 
Borne, and we should do as they do. Perhaps we are like 
Mahomet, idly waiting for the mountain to come to us. Instead 
of wondering why our hearing associates do not come to us and 
take more interest in us, it would be better for us to go to them 
and show that we are worthy of attention. We should read 
more. We should be well posted in current events and abreast 
with the general ideas of the day, and aim to be so stored with 



22 Proceedings of the Second 

general information that oar friends will feel amply repaid when 
they take the trouble to converse with us." 

Mr. Patterson took exception to that part of Mr. Fox's paper 
criticising deaf-mutes who pursue the occupation of card peddling 
as a means of subsistence. In his opinion, a deaf-mute, when by 
illness, or lack of employmeut, he is driven to an extremity, is 
justified in seeking a livelihood by peddling, or even begging, 
rather than permit his family to suffer for want of proper nourish- 
ment. In such a case, he did not regard a deaf-mute as dis- 
graced, when the ends to be reached are considered. 

Mr. Driscoll, New York, moved that the discussion of the 
paper cease, and other papers be considered. Seconded by Mr. 
Souweine, New York, and adopted. 

" Deaf-Mutes in Politics," by Mr. Harry White, Massachusetts, 
was the next paper read. Rev. Mr. Chamberlain acted as oral 
intrepreter. 



"DEAF-MUTES IN POLITICS." 

BY HARRY WHITE, MASSACHUSETTS. 

As a class, we are a nonentity in the active and stirring 
drama of life — politics — in which all but those disqualified, either 
by reason of sex or total incapacity, take part. We have no in- 
fluence whatever upon current events, except as individual 
voters, and wily politicians or grasping office-seekers never think 
of asking our aid at the polls in behalf of their favorite schemes, 
though, according to the latest census, we are thirty-four thou- 
sand strong. 

In spite of our numerical strength, we are politically weak, for 
the obvious reason that we are scattered over a large area of terri- 
tory far removed from each other's influence, and governed in 
our actions mainly by the difference in sectional feelings and pre- 
judices. Thus a deaf-mute down South, brought up as he is in 
the traditions of the lordly land-holder, is either a Democrat or 
a red-hot Rebel ; in Virginia, lie is probably a Re-Adjuster ; in 
Ohio, a steady Republican ; in good New England, a sturdy. 
Democrat, ready to do battle for popular rights as his sires did of 
yore. We possess several papers devoted to the interests of our 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 23 

elass, not to speak of the large number of small institution 
papers which are published for the benefit of the pupils, but not 
■one of them is a political organ, as it would be impossible to suit 
the tastes of all on that particular subject, differing as we widely 
do in our views, colored as they are by partisan considerations 
and local patriotism. 

Other people imagine, on account of the world of silence in 
which we dwell, that we are completely shut out from the busy 
arena of politics, and other stirring events that take place on the 
public stage. How greatly mistaken they are, it is needless to 
tell. Eor the daily papers serve as an excellent medium for the 
dissemination of political news, and are there not usually 
among our class a few gifted ones who take delight in enlighten- 
ing the rest concerning the political situation of the day ? And 
are there not usually pitched battles, between the most violent 
partisans in our midst, upon the merits or demerits of their 
respective candidates ? 

As a matter of fact, deaf-mutes are more than mere " lookers- 
on in Venice." They generally take quite an active part in the 
discussion of public affairs, and will be found to be better in- 
formed upon current events than the rest of the world suppose. 
The papers containing bits of political gossip are eagerly read 
and treasured up by the active adherents among our class, and 
there are not a few who will argue hour after hour upon a stretch 
in defence of their party or principles. At such times, it would 
be as interesting as a play to watch the flashings of the eye, the 
look of unutterable scorn and the various tragic attitudes of the 
body, as the quick fingers, apparently animated with life, hurl 
invective upon invective at the misdeeds of the other party, 
while in striking contrast, the quiet bearing, steadfast attention 
Md unabashed gaze of the opponent under all these violent de- 
monstrations, seem to indicate either a calm repose or perfect in- 
difference. But never were appearances more deceitful ; he is 
°nly biding his time with one foot put forward, the arms folded 
&i if to repress the feelings of impatience and resentment which 
*e struggling within his breast, the compressed lips — all these 
till a plainer tale — and no sooner does his opponent come to a 
nil stop, than he rushes into a fiery strain of denunciation, with 
is brows knitted in heavy frowns, stamping his feet the while 
^ the sake of emphasis, now and then clearing up his counten- 



24 Proceedings of the Second 

ance, as with a smile of exultation he recounts the virtues of his 
party or ridicules the weakness or follies of the other. 

Wanting as we are in political strength, none of us is debarred 
from holding subordinate positions in the public service, and re- 
taining them upon our own merits. A glance into the several 
departments at Washington will reveal a good many quill-driver* 
upon whose ears the hubbub of a great city and buzz of con- 
versation going on around them pass by unheeded, uncared for 
and unknown. These dumb clerks have been retained at their 
posts, upon good behaviour, as long, if not longer than most 
public servants. In the New York Custom House and Post 
Office, several deaf-mutes have been employed for more or less- 
than a quarter of a century, without being removed for political 
reasons. All honor to whichever party in power. We hold 
conventions, it is true, but they are mainly devoted to pleasure- 
or business, rarely if ever to politics ; not that we shun that 
debatable ground, but simply because we have no axes to grind,, 
and nothing to obtain under the federal government. Where 
some of us to run for offices, then lively times would be witnessed 
at such gatherings, much more lively than the public would 
credit, and who knows that there may be even now in our midst 
some mute, inglorious Blaine or Conkling, who requires but an 
occasion and an opportunity to distinguish himself ! The only 
instance I have ever heard of a member of our silent community 
taking part in a caucus or political gathering, is the following, 
in which Gen. Butler figures prominently: "In Lowell, there 
used to live an old, highly respected deaf-mute, known by the 
name of 'Dumb Mike.' One day, he took it into his head to- 
attend a political meeting which Gen. Butler was to address, a& 
he was anxious to catch sight of the famous 'Old Ben,' whom 
it had never been his good fortune to gaze upon. Entering th& 
hall early in the evening, he secured a seat, in the front row, an! 
patiently bided his time until the meeting was full, and Gen*. 
Butler arose to address the audience, by whom he was greeted 
with vociferous applause. Old Ben cleared this throat, began 
his speech and looked around for sympathizing faces, as is thtf 
case with most speakers. His eye caught the steadfast gaze an'J 
interested contenance of Dumb Mike. To him, therefore, th<|) 
speaker directed his attention the whole evening, gesticulating? 

and nodding his head vehemently. Mike, vastly interested 

f 01 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 25 

the performance, bowed his head each time in accompaniment 
to the General's repeated nods, as is the babit of his class when 
addressed by other people. A part of the :mdience witnessed this 
dumb play, and soon the whisper went around, 'the General is 
talking to Dumb Mike,' and this was said with many smiles, and 
a wink of eye. The General, elated by the favorable im- 
pression he was apparently producing upon the object of his 
attention, talked faster and gesticulated more furiously. As 
soon as he ended his speech, he came down to shake hands with 
his friends, and went with an ill-concealed eagerness to where 
Mike was standing. Both were shaking hands, and beaming 
with smiles, as if they were old friends, and the General said 
in an affable tone, "How do you do ? Glad to see you." Mike, 
catching the motion of his lips, quickly pat his hand to his ear, 
at the same time shaking his head. Gen. Butler, gazing at 
him in astonishment, turned to a bystander, who, like the rest, 
seemed convulsed with laughter, asking : ' What the deuce does 
he mean ?' ' Oh, that is Dumb Mike,' said the bystander. 

' He is deaf as a post, and .' The rest of the sentence was 

lost in oblivion by the sudden exit of the General in a tower- 
ing passion. It was not long after this that the General, in 
Congress, gave it as his estimable opinion that deaf-mutes were 
but half-men." 

Some of you are probably aware of an attempt to plant a 
deaf-mute community somewhere in the West, a few years ago. 
Several families of deaf-mutes went and settled there, rulers 
were chosen, the affairs of the infant settlement were managed 
by a dumb mayor and deaf aldermen. Ambitious visions of a 
seat in the halls of Legislature or Congress were indulged in by 
the most prominent members of the silent community. But 
the projectors had forgotten one important law of Nature ; the 
children born in the community would be able to hear and talk 
like the rest of the world, as deafness is not necessarily heredi- 
tary but mainly accidental, and where then would the " Silent 
Community" be, after the rising generation attained the age of 
maturity ? The class would have been obliterated in one genera- 
tion, and its chief characteristics would have disappeared. But 
before that time came, dissensions arose among them, and like 
the tribes of Israel, they were scattered upon the face of the 
earth. This is the first modern instance of our class attempt- 



26 Proceedings of the Second 

ing to form a municipality by themselves, and it will, in all 
probability, be the last, as from the nature of things such an 
Utopian dream is impossible of fulfillment. 

We have reason to be thankful for the great changes in our 
social and political condition which have taken place within the 
last half-century. Time was when a deaf-mute was classed with 
idiots and lunatics, or other irresponsible persons, and deprived of 
all legal and political privileges. Locke, in his Commentaries on 
the Law, pronounced us as an imbecile and irresponsible class, 
without any legal rights whatever. To-day, we are recognized 
as equals with our more fortunate brothers or sisters, in the eye 
of the law, in all save the precious possession of hearing, and 
our political rights are assured to us beyond the power of recall. 
We possess the right of suffrage, which, of itself, is a manifest 
recognition of our intelligence and capabilities. 

There is one feature of the subject which we, as a class, must 
view with indignation, as it is one calculated to inflict the deep- 
est wrongs upon others afflicted like ourselves, and against 
which we must enter our protest in unmeasured terms. In some 
places, we are too often made the victims of political changes, 
and one of the worst forms of the spoils system, in the matter of 
education. No sooner is one's party victorious at the polls, than 
the chief executive officers and teachers are displaced by others 
who do not possess the least qualification for the places. Igno- 
rant of the method of communication with the pupils under 
their charge, devoid of any experience in the duties of their re- 
sponsible offices, and indifferent to the interests of the institution, 
such men can not but render the greatest possible injury to the 
institution and retard its progress for a long time to come. The 
pupils suffer by their ignorance and inexperience to so great an 
extent as to be incapable of making steady progress. It requires 
a vast deal more ingenuity and skill to teach a deaf and dumb 
child than it does one who can hear and speak, and, in this case, 
much experience is necessary in order to make a good teacher. 
The best scholars are spoiled by new teachers, and the time of a 
deaf-mute's instruction is much more limited than that of the 
hearing children in the public schools. The teachers are ren- 
dered careless of their duties and less devoted to the interest of 
their pupils by the sense of insecurity which they feel, in view of 
the frequent changes of officers, and the effects are most dis- 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 87 

astrous upon the pupils, who are entirely dependent upon their 
teachers for whatever mental instruction they stand in need of. 
Let their teachers have the full assurance that the continuance 
of their positions depend, not upon political favors, but upon 
their own conduct or efficiency, and they will be stimulated to 
their best powers, thus giving their pupils the benefit. If an 
old, tried teacher is displaced, his successor will be obliged to 
wait until he has learned the sign-language and become better 
acquainted with his pupils, which will take several years, and in 
the meantime his pupils will have to wait until he has reached 
the required degree of efficiency, or leave school before then, 
with their education half finished. Such a system of patronage 
can not be too strongly condemned, as its effects are demoraliz- 
ing upon every department of the institution. To attempt to 
throw such obstacles in the way of a class so severely handicap- 
ped in the race of life, and struggling against other disadvan- 
tages, is nothing less than a crime against humanity. The evils 
of the spoliation system are nowhere so marked as in the insti- 
tutions of the deaf and dumb. The institution which is free 
from political interference, has an air of contentment and pros- 
perity about it. The principal is a firm, progressive man, anx- 
ious to raise his institution to the front rank ; the teachers are 
happy in their lives, devoted to their profession, and thoughtful 
of the interests of their pupils. Look at the other picture. The 
institution, cursed with the doctrine, "to the victors belong 
the spoils," bears an unmistakable air of decay or neglect. Its 
principal is timid and hesitating, cruel and sometimes harsh in 
his dealings with the innocent pupils; the teachers partake of 
the same timidity, or else are indifferent and listless in the per- 
formance of their duties, bent only upon earning their salaries, 
and the pupils — God pity them — take no pride in their attain- 
ments, having no incentive before them. The money of the 
State is practically wasted in this case. If legislators fully rea- 
lized the deep moral wrong of such a system, they would never 
meddle with institutions for the deaf and dumb. 

Mb. Bond : — "Deaf-mutes ought to go into politics with all 
the circumstances possible. They are but handfulls here and 
there, but they could accomplish some good with national issues, 
and also with State governments if they combined. We would 
be recognized did we go into a party united. If deaf-mutes neg- 



28 Proceedings of the Second 

lect politics, they can not be citizens of the United States. So 
long as they take no interest in politics, they are fit to remain 
on foreign soil. Politics protects the Union and its constitu- 
tion, and deaf-mutes ought to study all they can from national 
politics to local politics. From the Federal Government down 
to the local city government, all are run by politics. If mutes 
do not take interest in politics, they become ignorant of the sys- 
tem of Federal Government. I advise all deaf-mutes to take all 
the interest they can in politics, regardless of party measures." 

Mb. Rogers: — "I differ with Mr. White with regard to ad- 
vising deaf-mutes to stand aloof from politics. I think they 
should be encouraged to interest themselves in politics more than 
they do, for I know an instance where politics proved very profit- 
able to a deaf-mute. 

"Mr. R. W. Branch, a friend of mine, is the deaf-mute allud- 
ed to. He went to school at the North Carolina Institution 
some years, and then two years at the National Deaf-Mute Col- 
lege. Finding it inconvenient to stay longer at college, he went 
to Florida and engaged in farming, but it failed to give him 
satisfaction. He then went to Nashville, Tenn., and obtained 
employment as a clerk in the Register of Deeds' office. Mr. 
Branch continued there for three years, and, perceiving by expe- 
rience and observation, that he could manage the office as satis- 
factorily as a hearing man, he decided to run as a candidate for it 
at the next election. At first he encountered much ridicule and 
discouragement. His friends dissuaded him, but, being possess- 
ed of plenty of courage, he adhered to his resolution. He 
adopted the politician's tactics and gave barbecues, shook hands 
with every body, went to picnics and distributed broadcast hia 
cards. In his first election he was defeated, but in the second 
he triumphed. 

"Mr. Branch has held his office for three successive terms, 
and it is worth between $3,000 and $3,500 a year. The popula- 
tion of Nashville is about 12,000. Mr. Branch employs two- 
hearing clerks to assist him. 

" Deaf-mutes have some power in politics, for we have votes, 
and if we let politicians know the fact, we might bear some in- 
fluence on them in voting for appropriations of money for advanc- 
ing the general welfare of our class." 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 29 

The third paper read was presented by Mr. Henry C. Rider 
of Mexico, N. Y. 



" DEAF-MUTE LIFE INSURANCE." 

BY H. C. RIDER, MEXICO, N. Y. 

Ladies and Gentlemen: — Please permit me to encroach 
upon your time a few moments by bringing to your notice a 
subject which, to all of us, is pregnant with importance — that 
of life insurance — one which for many years, among our hearing 
friends, has been admitted to be a matter of vital interest. With 
us, it is a subject which has heretofore, until quite recently, re- 
ceived but little attention, principally from the fact that nearly 
all of us have, by reason of infirmity, been practically debarred 
from participating in its benefits. 

All intelligent, far-seeing individuals, ought to have the 
good sense to realize that life insurance, with a forthcoming 
indemnity after death, is a sacred duty which they owe to them- 
selves, their wives, husbands, orphans, or other dear friends. 
Viewing the subject in this light, thousands have obtained life- 
policies provided for dependents, or for other friends, and have 
thereby blessed humanity by averting impoverished distress. 
This is what has been done by many of our hearing friends, but 
not by us. And why not by many of us ? Simply because we 
lack the sense of hearing, and, of course, are looked upon by life 
insurance organizations as being too liable to accidental death to 
make profitable patrons. To a large extent, but not wholly, are 
they justified in drawing for themselves such a safe conclusion, 
and the result is but a very few policies for the deaf and dumb. 
This is the substance of the difficulty in a nutshell. Next, as 
to its remedy. 

For the especial benefit of the deaf and dumb, male and fe- 
male, and also the hearing who may desire to participate in the 
bounties of the feast, I last, winter formed, organized, and plac- 
ed upon file in the office of the Secretary of State at Albany, 
as well as in the office of the County Clerk of Oswego County, 
the life insurance society known as the " Deaf-Mutes' Mutual 
Benefit Association," of Mexico, N. Y. ; and as a duly and 
legally chartered association, officered by some of the most reli- 
able, trustworthy business men of Mexico, together with a few 



30 Proceedings of the Second 

well-known, highly-respected deaf-mutes of the State, I soon 
after, with the aid of the other officers, began operations, in a 
modest way at first, for no good and safe philanthropy of a 
long-lived character has any affinity for mushroom growth. 
Large enterprises of great practical benefit to humanity, do not 
usually, at first, move by very rapid strides. The little boy does 
not produce a great snow-ball by turning a handful of snow once 
or twice, but by long and patiently rolling. The Washington 
monument and the Brooklyn bridge did not, like Jonah's gourd, 
grow up in a night, neither will they, like the latter, perish in a 
day. I would not compare the Association with those gigantic 
structures, but its principles are more philanthropic, and I trust 
its endurance will survive to be counted by centuries. 

Well, although the Association is meeting with success, the 
deaf and dumb do not, as a whole, realize its mission, and are 
slow to awake to a conception of its prospective benefits. Our 
hearing friends are quick to perceive the need of life policies, 
and we should be like zealous. They have their life associations 
open to the hearing public, and the esteem in which they are 
held is plainly evidenced by the long lists of patrons. We have 
a similar association for our people which, being yet in its in- 
fancy, has no long roll of membership, but one which, when 
better understood, I trust, will rank high among life insurance 
associations. Being devised particularly to benefit the deaf and 
dumb, though open to others, and also to women as well as men, 
no deaf-mute of suitable age and physical condition should de- 
lay becoming a member upon the first opportunity. "In time 
of peace prepare for war," and in health prepare for misfortunes 
of your kindred or other cherished friends. 

At death no thought, save that of spiritual preparation for 
the trying ordeal, can afford greater consolation than that we 
have made safe and suitable provision for the immediate neces- 
sities of those dependent upon us in life. Such matters should 
not be procrastinated. The grim monster Death is liable to ap- 
proach like a thief in the night. But a breath suspends us be- 
tween time and eternity. In a moment the silver cord is snap- 
ped asunder, and the victim is gone — prepared or unprepared ; 
therefore, the subject of life insurance should be met at once, 
and without postponement. 

My friends, the evil day is approaching, whether soon or later, 



National Deaf- Mute Convention. 31 

and let us display wisdom as well as humanity. Be true to your 
wives, husbands and children, or to your best friends, by becom- 
ing members of the "Deaf-Mutes' Mutual Benefit Associa- 
tion," and leave them, at your death, a substantial token, as a 
reminder of your appreciation of their affections and your inter- 
est in their welfare. 

Upon t*le conclusion of the reading of Mr. Eider's paper, the 
President announced the names of the National Executive Com- 
mittee, who are also to form the Gallaudet Centennial Commis- 
sion : 

NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE. 

T. A. Froehlich, N. Y. D. S. Bogers, S. C. 

J. T. Elwell, Pa. Tiios. Brown, N. H. 

Kobert Patterson, Ohio. Hiram P. Hunt, Me. 

D. W. George, III. T. L. Brown, Mien. 

G. T. Dougherty, Mo. W. McDougall, N. J. 

S. J. Vail, Ind. Jas. S. Wells, Md. 

G. A. Holmes, Mass. G. W. Steenrod, W. Va. 

W. H. Weeks, Conn. Key. Job Turner, Va. 

Oscar Kinsman, E. I. J. K. T. Hoaglanl, Ky. 

The Convention adjourned to 10 o'clock Thursday morning. 



THURSDAY, AUGUST 30 — FORENOON SESSION. 

Proceedings opened at 10.30 a.m., with an invocation by Mr. 
S. Crossett, of Hartford, Conn. 
The chair announced the order of business for the day to be : 

1. Letters and communications. 

2. Papers. 

3. Keport of the Executive Committee. 

4. Miscellaneous business. 

5. Announcements. 

6. Adjournment. 

A letter was read by the Secretary, from Mr. P. S. Engelhardt : 

"Milwaukee, August 21, 1883. 
"To the Secretary op the National Deap-Mdte Convention : 

" Dear Sir : — I regret my inability to be present at tbe Second National 
Convention as a member of the Executive Committee and delegate, on ac- 



32 Proceedings of the Second 

count of the uncertain state of my mother's health. No instruction or mo- 
tion was given or made to me from the Wisconsin Alumni Society ior the 
Convention. Even the President of our Society was not instructed or re- 
quested by the Society to say something before your Convention. Tou 
should sit down on any pretended motion or instruction from tiie egotistic 
President of the Wisconsin Alumni Society. I hope the Convention will 
be a great success and in harmony. 

" Respectfully yours, 

" Philip S. Engelhardt." 



Mr. Jones, New York, was appointed a Committee to notify 
the Executive Committee that their report was in order. It was 
found that the Committee was not yet prepared to report. On 
motion of Mr. Bond, the Committee were instructed to report at 
11 o'clock. 

At the time appointed, the report was presented by the Chair- 
man, and read by Mr. George. It recommended Washington, 
D. C, as the next place of meeting, and August, 1887, as the 
time. It also recommended Mr. W. H. Weeks as Treasurer of 
the Gnillaudet Centennial Memorial Fund, which should be kept 
separate from the funds of the Convention. 

President Hodgson (Mr. T. L. Brown in the chair) objected 
to August as the time for holding the Convention. He advocat- 
ed December, and offered a motion in favor of December 10th, 
1887. 

Mr. George replied that the Committee had selected August 
as being more convenient for most deaf-mutes than December. 
The discussion was continued by Messrs. Patterson and Bond in 
favor of August. Mr. McGregor suggested that as the Gallau- 
det Centennary was in December, 1887, the Convention should 
meet in August, 1888. 

Mr. Hodgson withdrew his motion, and offered as a substitute 
one to the effect that the Executive Committee be requested to 

reconsider the date agreed upon. Seconded by Mr. . 

This motion was debated adversely by Mr. George, but finally 
prevailed. 

The Committee went into executive session, and while await- 
ing the report, Mr. Hodgson resumed the chair. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 33 

During the recess, announcements of picnics that were to be 
held, were made. 

In a short time, the Executive Committee re-entered and re- 
ported. 

Report of the National Executive Committee. 

The National Executive Committee appointed by President 
E. A. Hodgson, held a meeting in Lyric Hall, on August 30th, 
1883, at 9 : 30 a.m., Chairman T. A. Proehlich presiding. D. 
W. George was appointed secretary. Discussion ensued as to 
the best place for holding the next National Convention. The 
general opinion was that the West was entitled to have the next 
convention, but it was desirable to have a National Celebration 
of the one hundredth anniversary of the birth of Eev. Thomas 
Hopkins Gallaudet, the founder of deaf-mute education in this 
country, and no place for such a celebration was more appropri- 
ate than Washington City. Accordingly (on motion of Mr. H. 
P. Hunt, of Maine, seconded by Mr. J. K. T. Hoagland, of 
Kentucky), it was unanimously resolved that Washington City 
be recommended as the place for the third meeting of the deaf- 
mutes in national convention. 

Discussion then ensued as to the month most suitable for hold- 
ing the Convention. The general opinion was that it was not 
for the best interests of the Convention to meet on the precise 
date of the Gallaudet anniversary, December 10th, 1887. 

Mr. W. H. Weeks, of Connecticut, offered a resolution re- 
commending the last week in August, 1887, as the time for hold- 
ing the Convention in Washington City. Mr. D. S. Rogers, of 
South Carolina, seconded. Mr. Weeks' motion was agreed to by 
a vote of 12 to 2. 

The matter of devising plans for a suitable national memorial 
in honor of Rev. T. H. Gallaudet was considered. 

Mr. W. H. Weeks moved to recommend that the members of 
the National Executive Committee be appointed agents to col- 
lect subscriptions for a memorial in their respective States, and 
that they be empowered to appoint sub-agents, and that due re- 
gard to economy should be observed in the expenses of collect- 
ing the fund. 

Mr. Weeks' motion was seconded by Mr. Oscar Kinsman, of 
Rhode Island, and was adopted unanimously. 
3 



34 Proceedings of the Second 

It required some time and consultation with artists to assist in 
determining the form of the proposed memorial, so nothing was 
decided upon. 

Mr. J. T. Elwell, of Pennsylvania, moved that it be the aim 
of the committee to collect a fund of not less than $2,500. Mr. 
T. L. Brown, of Michigan, seconded. Mr. D. W. George offer- 
ed the amendment that the proposed fund be named the " Gal- 
laudet Centennial Memorial Fund," which was accepted. Mr. 
Elwell's motion, as thus amended, was agreed to unanimously. 

On motion of Mr. S. J. Vail, of Indiana, it was unanimously 
voted to select Mr. W. H. Weeks as Treasurer of the memorial 
fund, subject to the action of the convention in session. 

The committee submitted its report to the convention in ses- 
sion. The time of holding the convention was referred back to 
them for re-consideration, some being in favor of holding the 
convention on the precise date of the one hundredth anniversary 
of Eev. Thomas H. Gallaudet's birth. 

A second session was held, and on motion of Mr. Robert Pat- 
terson, of Ohio, it was agreed to recommend August, 1888, as 
the time of holding the convention. 

This re-consideration was then announced to the convention in 
session. 

The committee held a meeting on the afternoon of August 
30th, to audit bills held against the convention. The commit- 
tee recommended the payment of the following amounts : 

To E. A. Hodgson, for advertising in the Journal, $10. 

To W. A. Bond, for advertising in the Leader, $5. 

To E. A. Hodgson, for printing badges, $1. 

To Jacques Loew, for furnishing ribbon, $4.25. 

To W. A. Bond, for services on Local Committee, $10. 

To John Wilkinson, for services on Local Committee, $3. 

D. W. George, Secretary. 

Theo. A. Feoehlich, Chairman. 

Mr. Bond moved to accept the amended report, seconded by 
Mr. Godfrey. Mr. White made a point of order in opposition 
to the motion, but was not sustained by the chair. 

Mr. George inquired if the motion just made meant to include 
year, month and place, and was answered in the affirmative. 
The motion was adopted. 



National Deaf -Mute Convention. 35 

Mr. Froehlich moved that the Executive Committee be em- 
powered to decide upon the exact date of the meeting in 1888 ; 
seconded by Mr. Fox, and carried. 

It was agreed that the President of the Convention shall have 
power to fill all vacancies that may occur in the National Execu- 
tive Committee, such appointments being made from the State 
in which the vacancy occurs. 

The Convention at IS. 10 p.m., took a recess until two o'clock. 



AFTERHOON. 

The Convention re-assembled at two o'clock, and came to order 
ten minutes later. Business was resumed with the reading of a 
paper, by Mr. Jerome T. Elwell, on " The Truth about the ' Pure 
Oral Method. ' " As Mr. Elwell was about to begin, Mr. Patter- 
son objected to the reading of the paper as being out of order. 
The Chair decided Mr. Elwell's paper to be in order. Mr. Pat- 
terson appealed from the decision of the Chair. 

Mr. George moved that the appeal be decided by a vote. 
Carried. 

Upon being put to a vote, the President's decision was sus- 
tained. 

Mr. Patterson gave his reasons for not wishing to have the 
paper read, arguing that it related to a question which did not 
concern the Convention. Messrs. George, McGregor and Fox, 
spoke in favor of having the paper read. 

Mr. Hodgson (Mr. Weeks in the Chair) replied to Mr. Patter- 
son. He said that Mr. Elwell was a teacher as well as Mr. 
Patterson, and as a member of the Convention, he had rights 
equal to any, which rights should be respected. Many of the 
members were instructors, following the combined method, and 
would like to have the paper read. 

While Mr. Hodgson was speaking, Mr. Bond raised the point 
that as no question or motion was before the Convention, Mr. 
Hodgson was out of order. Mr. Hodgson having retired, Mr. 
George took the floor, and repeated substantially the same 
arguments in favor of the reading of the paper advanced by Mr. 
Hodgson. 

Mr. White moved that Mr. Elwell's paper be read. Passed. 



36 Proceedings of the Second 

SOME TEUTH ABOUT THE PURE ORAL SYSTEM. 

BY JEROME T. ELWELL, PENNSYLVANIA. 

Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen : — I venture to presume 
upon your indulgence in whatever I may have to say. At the 
earnest request of some of your highly honored friends present, 
I was induced to prepare, almost extemporarily, the following 
few pages, with the hope not only of delivering us your mouth- 
piece before yourselves, but before the world, our candid opinion 
in regard to an educational system designed for our benefit, and 
known as "The Pure Oral System." 

Lack of speech, rather the want of hearing, while yet a mis- 
fortune which is neither to be disregarded nor unregretted, is 
one on which it is happily not our custom to harp. Perhaps a 
reason may be found in the fact that individual misfortune is 
not strictly individual in its inflictions. And rather than flat- 
tering ourselves into the belief of possessing any extraordinary 
power to overcome the trial of patience in this world, we assume 
that individual misfortune is national or universal misfortune ; 
that a person's deafness is not bounded within himself, but af- 
fects the whole community. Therefore, it becomes the interest 
and duty of that community to advance the condition of its un- 
fortunate individuals. Afflictions, such as deafness, may not be 
within human power to cure, because the laws of nature are im- 
mutable, and nothing short of the presence of a divine spirit can 
accomplish such a miracle as the restoration of hearing. But 
God has given man a thinking brain, a tender heart and a help- 
ing hand, that he might minister to the wants of his fellowmen. 
Here, again, are evidences of a duty of mankind to aid one an- 
other. But how shall we, as a class, be assisted ? Surely not 
by alms, which pride properly forbids us to receive ; but by edu- 
cation, the great exilir that wakens the dormant soul to its re- 
sponsibility for this life. It is the radiant boon that inspires 
within us a spirit of self-reliance and thereby raises us in our 
own and mutual respect. It causes us to forget our affliction, 
by giving the mind something worth dwelling on, and in this 
forgetfulness there is bliss. For this reason merely, what nobler 
act can a state or nation perform than by relieving our class of 



National Deaf- Mute Convention. 37 

its subjects by infusing into our minds the beautiful light of 
education ? We say nobler act, because the education of the deaf 
has been too often considered charity. The day is already upon 
us, however, when governments are reminded of the rights of 
the deaf, and humble supplications before, legislatures in their 
behalf, are becoming things of the past. 

But we have been deviating somewhat from our purpose. Let 
us again ask : How shall we be assisted ? By what means shall 
we be taught, and thus be fitted to assist ourselves ? I refer 
particularly to mental development rather than manual skill. 
While gratefully acknowledging the " enlightened selfishness " 
of our government in affording us the first means to the world 
of thought by munificent appropriations, does not it behoove us, 
as wards, as children, as men, as freemen of the United States, 
to see that these pecuniary aids are not twisted from their proper 
course by a plausable system for our elementary instruction at 
school, which has nothing else to sanction it than " progressive " 
enthusiasm of popular and, too often, journalistic, ignorance ? 
No doubt yon all understand that I refer to the so-called " Pure 
Oral System." Perhaps it is unnecessary to remind you not to 
be confounded with what is known as the " Combined Method," 
a means of enlightening the darkened mind of the uneducated 
deaf-mute, which is as widely divergent in its meihods as it is 
reasonable. In my mind's eye, the " Pure Oral System " is like 
" the free-lunch fiend." We must watch it, lest too many of its 
grabs prove not only too depredatory to ourselves and to the 
community at large, but also disadvantageous to the government 
which replenished the plate. 

We pride ourselves of living in an age of " immense strides." 
Old fogyism is too slow. Instead of the post-mail of our grand- 
fathers, we have interwoven a network of wire and rails round 
about the earth. Transportation becomes a matter of annihi- 
lating distance, and — 

" Swifter than meteor's shaft through summer skies,'' 
From pole to pole the anxious message flies. 

Every new invention, designed for the happiness of mankind, is 
given a fair and reasonable trial in the balance of experiment^ 
and its merits fully tested. The telegraph and telephone had 
their day, and still have it. The audiphone or, dentaphone has 
had its day, but that is all, as you, my silent friends, can testify. 



38 Proceedings o/4he Second 

So, also, in deaf-mute instruction in this country for the past 
seventy years, the signs and manual alphabet — the system of 
Thomas H. Gallaudet, whom we gratefully propose to immor- 
talize with a bronze figure— have had their day, and still have 
it. As a medium of communication of ideas among ourselves, 
we all know how imperfect the sign-language is ; but then it is 
the most natural for us, and, being natural, is everything, though 
it may not be quite developed and systemized. The " Pure 
Oral SyBtem " is having its day, too ; but to me, everything, de- 
spite its plausible and over-enthusiastic claims, brand it as a 
method which has but a doubtful end in view, at least for all 
general purposes in the education and conversation of the deaf ; 
and, within these general limits, gives its future day the appear- 
ance of " a matter of curious supposition." The reason is obvi- 
ous, because pure oralism rests on the flimsy hypothesis that 
sound can be understood and reproduced simply by watching and 
attempting to imitate the organs that produce them, without the 
sense of hearing, and that every deaf person is possessed of this 
power in a greater or less degree, defects in his mental capacity, 
if there be any, to the contrary notwithstanding. 

When signs and articulation help each other to suit individual 
cases in deaf-mute instruction — a method the most proper and 
reasonable — we have what is known as the " Combined System." 
Of its great superiority over the " Pure Oral," I am happy to 
say you are all living and worthy examples. Before me are 
faces, bright and intelligent, indicating hearts full of love and 
happiness — countenances that speak louder and more distinctly 
than an entire vocabulary of meaning than any plausible system 
of pure oralism could express. In the purely oral taught con- 
genital deaf-mute we look for these characteristics ; and for the 
same or better social standing, we look, and look in vain ! Un- 
til the so-called "socially restored" deaf, that is, those who are 
dubbed so, are rescued from this flattering delusion, there will be 
no social restoration to speak of,; except, as a friend, who is in a 
position to kuow, assures me, it be one case out of the hundred ; 
and while the combined method may not be perfection itself, 
every professional advocate and his intelligent pupil know 
that the latter has ninety ->niue chances of social restoration to 
everyone aLthe puj:eJy_Qral SP ,taught.dflo/-?»itfe, whatever mean- 
ing may be attached to the term, "social restoration." The 



National Leaf-Mutt Convention. 39 

reason is clear: the combined system requires less expense, less 
effort and less time, in reaching and developing the understand' 
ing. 

If social ostracism of an individual is a misfortune, permit me 
again to repeat that individual misfortune is a national or univer- 
sal calamity which it becomes a duty through self and universal 
interest to avert. 

In conclusion, I would say that it is fitting, and accordingly 
move that this Convention, representing the intelligence of the 
34,000 deaf persons of these United States, declare their senti- 
ments in favor of the " Combined System " over the " Pure 
Oral," and endorse Prof. K. S. Starrs' and Miss S. H. Porter's 
excellent articles in the late July number of the American 
Annals of the Deaf and Dumb, and recommend their careful 
perusal to all who may not have read them, and who may be 
further interested in this subject. 



The paper was announced as being open for discussion. 

Mr. Wilkinson moved that the discussion of the paper be post- 
poned till 7 p.k. Lost. 

Mr. Bond made a motion that each speaker be limited to five 
minutes. This was adopted. 

Mr. George : — " The value of the power of speech to the 
deaf has generally been greatly overestimated by those who hear. 
My own experience coincides with nearly every semi-mute of my 
acquaintance in showing that speech is of little value as a means 
of communication compared with writing. Taking away the 
hearing has about the same effect on one's speech as removing 
the rudder of a ship has on its course. The loss of hearing is 
invariably followed by an unnatural utterance of the voice which 
is often painful and disagreeable to listen to. Those who are 
deaf very soon become aware of this, and are quick to become 
sparing in the use of speech. Added to this is the great dif- 
ficulty experienceduin^be}ng«rea^fly~mderstood'- by- any but 
their most intimate friends and relatives. Again, the efforts of 
the deaf to speak, feel labored and unnatural to them. They 
are like trying to walk through a* dark room full of chairs. 
They are like trying to play a tune on a fiddle. They are like 



40 Proceedings of the Second 

the efforts of a blind man to paint the rainbow. It is tedious, 
tiresome and disgusting work to them. Added to the already 
burdensome labor of articulating without the guidance of the 
hearing, comes the difficulty of finding appropriate language in 
which to clothe their ideas. The ungainly, ungrammatical, dis- 
connected and extremely commonplace utterances that are stut- 
tered off the tongue of the deaf, form a striking contrast with 
the smooth, elegant diction that flows reading from his pencil. 
The reason of this is the attention on the one hand is divided 
between the choice of words and expressions easiest to articu- 
late, and the proper articulation of them ; while on the other 
hand it is concentrated entirely upon the clearest written ex- 
pression of the thought, and while writing, there is more time 
to think. For practical serviceableness speech is very much in- 
ferior to writing, hence it appears of greater importance that the 
deaf should be taught to read and write with ease than to waste 
much time in the toilsome process of teaching them to speak, 
when the prospect is that they will use it so little in after life. 
Those who become deaf after having learned to speak by imitat- 
ing sounds they hear, could receive some benefit in having their 
attention directed more particularly to the processes by which 
articulate sounds are produced, but this should be a super-addi- 
tion to their education, such as the knowledge of a trade, paint- 
ing and drawing, book-keeping or music (for those who can 
hear). Articulation, as the main part of one's education, is an 
absurdity. Why are the millions of heathens and civilized peo- 
ple on earth classified as illiterate and ignorant, because they can 
neither read nor write ? They can speak. It is hard, hard 
enough to teach the deaf to write, why crush him with the addi- 
tional burden of learning to speak through laborious mechanical 
processes. Some enthusiasts fancy they can rob the deaf of 
their sign-language. Vain thought ! They might as well try 
to prejudice ducks against water. Our sign-language is God- 
given ! Speech is a human invention ! The language of signs 
is universal, that of speech local. Signs were used long before 
the Babel of tongues was sent to confound the human race." 

Mb. Fox : — "It has always seemed to me that too much 
attention is given to the opinions of theorists, on this subject of 
teaching. the deaf to articulate. We see men arguing in favor of 
the oral method, who from . personal experience know compara- 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 41. 

tively little of the general subject of deaf-mute education. The 
fact that some teachers say that the deaf can be successfully, 
taught to speak, seems to them to be sufficient. They make no 
distinction between pupils possessing an aptitude for such instruc- 
tion and others who have none. I have had some personal ex- 
perience of the articulation system under competent instructors,, 
and while I have made some progress myself, being a semi-mute, 
I still deny that congenital mutes can obtain a better education 
or become possessed of more general information by means of the 
oral than by the combined system. 

"The system which the pure oralists follow, is the word- 
method, which discards both signs and the manual alphabet, 
and thus sacrifices to the idea of the importance of speech all 
knowledge except that of simple and correct forms of phrase- 
ology. The words thus mastered "are available only for the com- 
monest purposes of life, and are acquired at the loss of much gen- 
eral information. In contrast witli this the combined system em- 
braces every method which experience has shown to be of value 
to the deaf. Many people have the mistaken impression that 
signs alone are its instruments, while in truth, it makes great 
use not only of signs, but of objects, pictures, natural panto- 
mime and the alphabet, printed, written and manual. Besides 
these, it also employs articulation and lip-reading in cases where 
found practicable. 

" It would appear that a system like this, which employs every 
available means for the end desired, must be the most perfect. 
It not only has the advantages of articulation and lip-reading, 
but other aids which the followers of the pure oral method do 
not employ. Of course it is all very fine to hear the oralists re- 
count the possibilities of their system, but until they are able to 
produce more tangible results than have thus far been shown, I, 
for one, believe in the method which employs all possible means 
for giving deaf-mutes a good general education, and at the same 
time does not neglect to employ articulation and lip-reading 
where it is found they can be used with advantage." 

, Me. Fro^hlich : — "While I believe that both systems, articu- 
lation and the sign-language,, are necessary for educating deaf- 
mutes, Ido not, think they can be taught successfully in con- 
junction. 

(f The articulate method, being the more desirable, as it in- 



42 Proceedings cf the Second 

structs the pupils at once in spoken language, necessitating no 
translation, as does the sign-language, should be used in all caser 
to which it is adapted. Truly, the mute can make himBelf un- 
derstood more readily among those of his own class by signs, but 
this is not the purpose of his education ; his education is meas- 
ured by his usefulness in, and his ability to make himself a part 
of the entire community. 

" It may be said the deaf never reach perfection in articulation. 
This is not universally the case ; still, granting it to be generally 
true, we frequently hear poof pronunciation by those in full 
possession of all the senses, or by foreigners, yet do we expect, 
them to communicate with us by signs, because of their defec- 
tive pronunciation ? We certainly ought to lend the same con- 
sideration to the deaf-mute. Besides, we quidkly' 1 become accus- 
tomed to peculiarities in pronunciation. 

" But the articulate method is not adapted to all classes of deaf- 
mutes. For example, the child of feeble intellect (from disease 
or other cause) and the congenital mute, can not, as a rule, be 
taught by this system. However, in justice to congenital mutes, 
I will say that there are several cases which have come under my 
personal observation, in which the parties were totally deaf from 
birth, who have been taught to speak correctly and fluently, and 
to understand others readily, and who are exceedingly well in- 
formed and well read. But such cases are rare, and unless the 
child in such condition gives promise of success, it should be 
educated by the French system of signs. 

" But the semi-mute, who may have become totally or semi-deaf 
at the age of four years or over, giving indications of an active 
and inquiring mind, can be successfully tanght by the articulate 
system. 

" Thus it is evident that both systems are necessary, but they 
should be kept separate and distinct. The deaf - mute has a 
strong propensity to sign-making. Signs are to him a natural 
language, in which, as has been said, he can make himself quick- 
ly intelligible to those of his own class. He will naturally, hav- 
ing no consideration for what will result in the greatest benefit 
to him, speak wit&his«a«s0eiates by f signs instead of embracing 
every opportunity to use the vocal organs. He can only reach 
perfection in articulation by continual practice, and if it be da* 
sired that he be educated by this method, he should be placed 



National Deaf-Mutt Convention. 43 

under such circumstances as will compel him to rely upon 
spoken language alone. 

" After he has mastered the difficulty of controlling and modu- 
lating his voice, the deaf-mute can, at any time, if he so desires, 
make himself familiar with the sign-language. I believe he 
would never become a good articulator, if taught by the com- 
bined system." 



Mr. George moved that the resolution accompanying Mr. 
Elwell's paper be adopted. Mr. Froehlich asked leave to amend 
the resolution, so as to lay it on the table. The amendment 
was rejected, and Mr. George's motion adopted without a dis- 
senting vote. 

On motion, the Treasurer was directed to pay $3 each to 
Messrs. George and Weeks for Treasurer's books for the conven- 
tion and the Gallaudet Memorial Fund, respectively, and $2 to 
Mr. Fox, for books for the Recording Secretary. 

Mr. McGregor moved thai* all bills against the convention be 
referred to the Chairman of the Executive Committee. Passed. 

Mr. Bond, referring to the First Convention, called for the 
report of the Committee on Constitution and By-Laws. None 
was offered. 

Mr. Fox moved that the Executive Committee be instructed 
to prepare a Constitution and By-Laws, and report at the next 
Convention. Adopted. 

Mr. H. C. Rider was excused from any further connection 
with the preparation of the Constitution and By-Laws. 

Mr. T. H. Brown moved a vote of thanks to the Local. Com- 
mittee. Adopted. 

Mr. Fox moved a vote of thanks to the City Press. Passed. 

Mr. Driscoll moved a vote of thanks to the presiding officer. 
Passed. 

Mr. Bond moved a vote of thanks to the Recording Secretary. 
Approved. 



44 Proceedings of the Second 

President Hodgson now advanced to the front of the plat- 
form and announced that the time had arrived when the de- 
liberations of this representative body of the deaf-mutes, of 
the United States must be brought to a close. He was much 
pleased with the harmonious and intelligent bearing which 
had characterized the proceedings of the Convention. He 
thanked the delegates for their cordial support and assistance 
by which they had lightened the duties imposed upon him as 
presiding officer. He failed to see many faces that had be- 
come familiar during the sessions of the First National Con- 
vention at Cincinnati. One member of the Executive Com- 
mittee appointed at the last convention, Mr. Selah Wait, of 
Illinois, has gone to his final rest beyond the grave. Some 
of those present might not be on earth to participate in the 
"centennial" gathering. He hoped prosperity and peace would 
attend each one, and that all would endeavor both by precept 
and example, to elevate the status of the silent class everywhere 
among civilized, humankind. He then declared the Second 
National Convention adjourned sine die. 

A prayer was offered and the benediction pronounced by 

Kev. John Chamberlain, of New York. 

E. A. Hodgson, 

President. 
Thomas F. Fox, 

Recording Secretary. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 45 



ROLL OF MEMBERSHIP. 



Name. City or Town. State. 

Bacharach, S Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Bailey, William H Beverly Massachusetts. 

Ballin, D Hoboken New Jersey. 

Barnard, Mrs. R. Boston Massachusetts. 

Barnes, A. A New York New York. 

Barrick, John Cincinnati Ohio. 

Barry, Miss Annie Baltimore Maryland. 

Barton, Mrs. 0. H Oroton Landing.. New York. 

Barton, Miss C. H Oroton Landing.. New York. 

Berley, Miss Gussie New York New York. 

Bond, W. A Brooklyn New York. 

Brandt, Harry Riegelsville Pennsylvania. 

Breen, Thomas Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Brophy, D. H Higganum Connecticut. 

Brown, F. T Brooklyn New York. 

Brown, H. P Oneida New York. 

Brown, S. M New York New York. 

Brown, T. H W. Henniker New H'pshire. 

Brown, T. L Flint Michigan. 

Bryan, Miss Annie Trenton New Jersey. 

Campbell, P. A New York New York. 

Capelli, A Hoboken New Jersey. 

Carroll, Ed Cleveland Ohio. 

Chapman, H. A Salem Massachusetts. 

Coffin, J Providence Rhode Island. 

Cole, A. C Schenevus New York. 

Cornelius, S. P New York New York. 

Connelly, Miss M Windsor Canada. 

Cooper, C . H Watertown New York. 

Crossett, S Hartford Connecticut. 

Crossett, Mrs. S Hartford Connecticut. 

Cullingworth, W. R Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Davis, E. R. . ; ; : Thomaston Connecticut. 

Davis, H. H Boston Massachusetts. 



46 Proceeding of the Second 

Deering, W. A Pittsfield New H'pahire. 

Delory, Phillipsburg. Pennsylvania, 

Derby, Ira H So. Weymouth . . Massachusetts. 

Doane, C. S Syracuse New York. 

Donnelly, Jas. F Brooklyn New York. , 

Donohue, J. P New York New York. 

Dougherty, G. T St. Louis Missouri. 

Driscoll, T. F New York. New York. 

Dunhp, Ed New York New York. 

Durian, W. F New York New York. 

Edmonston, CD Cornwall New York. 

Edmonston, P. W Cornwall New York. 

Ekartd, A New York New York. 

Elwell, J. T Philadelphia. — Pennsylvania. 

Emmons, Alfred New York New York. 

Ennis, Wm New York New York. 

Ensley, C Southington Connecticut. 

Erbe, H Thomaston Connecticut. 

Evans, 0. H So. Eoyalton .... Massachusetts. 

Fail-man, H. M Hartford Connecticut. 

Follette, Mrs. W. H Providence Ehode Island. 

Fox, Thos. F New York New York. 

Freyherg, Miss E New York New York. 

Froehlich, T. A New York New York. 

George, D. W Jacksonville Illinois 

Getsinger, T Buffalo New York. 

Godfrey, T Brooklyn New York. 

Goodison, T Eochester New York. 

Goldberg, I New York New York. 

Goldman, J. E New York New York. 

Guggenheimer, A New York New York. 

Grinnon, W New York New York. 

Hallicy, E. J Syracuse New York. 

Harrison, W. G Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Heller, E. C Biegelsville Pennsylvania. 

Henderson, A. L Baltimore Maryland. 

Henry, Miss Hannah Brooklyn New York. 

Hickock, W. D Brooklyn New York. 

HickB, Gilbert Long Island New York. 

Hitchcock, Miss E. H Flint Michigan. 



Notional Deaf-Mute Convention. 47 

Hoagland, J. K. T ... Covington Kentucky. 

Heyman, Moses New York New York. 

Hodgson, E. A New York New York. 

Howe, Henry M Boston Massachusetts. 

Homer, George Boston Massachusetts. 

Homer, Mrs. Annie Boston. . Massachusetts. 

Holmes, George Boston. Massachusetts. 

Houston, W Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Hunt, H. P Gray Maine. 

Ijams Miss M. M Frederick Maryland. 

Ijams, J. P Brooklyn New York. 

Jones, W. G New York New York. 

Juhring W. L Brooklyn New York. 

Juhring, Mrs. W. L Brooklyn, New York. 

Kevitt, Miss Hannah Passaic New Jersey. 

Kinsman, Oscar Providence Rhode Island. 

Klingman, Frank New York. New York. 

Knochel, F Baltimore Maryland. 

Krause, W. H Boston Massachusetts. 

Ladd, Amos A Winsted Connecticut. 

Le Clercq, C. J New York New York. 

Lefi, E New York New York. 

Leonard, J. H New York New York. 

Levi, Gustave Dubuque Iowa. 

Lewis, Miss Prudence New York New Xork. 

Lloyd, J., Jr New York New York. 

Lindemann, G New York New York. 

Lipsett, W. H Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 

Livingstone, E. D New Britain Connecticut. 

Lounsbury, T. I New York New York. 

Loew, Jacques New York New York. 

Ludwig, Miss E New York New York. 

Mann, C. Q New York New York. 

Marsh, J. P Thomastown Connecticut. 

McClellan, S Mountain View. . New Jersey. 

McDougal, W Jersey City New Jersey. 

McDougal, Mrs. W Jersey City New Jersey. 

McGregor, R. P Columbus Ohio. 

McLaughlin, M New York New York. 

Miles, E. E Syracuse. New York. 



48 Proceedings of the Second 

Munger, K. D Bridgeport Connecticut. 

Math, John Thomaston Connecticut. 

Nally, John... New York.... .. New York. 

Noble, Miss L: New York New York. 

O'Brien, J. F. New York . . New York. 

• O'Brien, Chas New York New York. 

O'Neil, J. F Brooklyn . ; New York. 

Page, J. W Biddeford Maine. 

Patterson, Robert. . Columbus : . Ohio. 

Porter, Geo. S New York. ..... New York. 

Pownall, W. G-. -Brooklyn New York. 

Reynolds, G. L Brooklyn New York. 

Rider, H. C Mexico New York. 

Riegel, H Riegelsville Pennsylvania. 

Roberts, Mrs. Clara New York New York. 

Rock, F. C Hartford Connecticut. 

Rogers, D. S Columbia South Carolina. 

Rotter, F New York New York. 

Russell, Jas New York New York. 

Schneider, T. H New York New York. 

Sherwood, J New York New York. 

Smith, Miss M. J New Britain Connecticut. 

Smithson, Mrs. M Cincinnati Ohio. 

Sonneborn, Miss S New York New York. 

Sonneborn, M New York New York. 

Soper, I. N New York New York. 

Souweine, E Brooklyn New York. 

Sprague, T. T Baltimore Maryland. 

Steenrod, G. W Wheeling West Virginia. 

Stein, A New York New York. 

Stengele, Henry New York New York. 

Stowell, C. W New York New York. 

Stryker, F. R New York New York. 

Fullam, Miss Sarah Rome New York. 

Terbush, W. A New York New York. 

Thomas, A. L Catskill New York. 

Tillinghast, J. T New Bedford Massachusetts. 

Treat, Miss B. H Frankfort Maine. 

Tresch, J. F. J New York New York. 

Turner, Rev. Job Staunton Virginia. 



National Deaf-Mute Convention. 49 

Vail, S. J Indianapolis Indiana. 

Van Tassel, C. W Tarrytown New York. 

Vosseller, Miss Dora North Branch. . . New Jersey. 

Ward, Jr., J Newark New Jersey. 

Washburne, Miss E Sing Sing New York. 

Webster, C. E Buffalo New York. 

Weeks, W. H Hartford Connecticut. 

Weil, Miss Nettie Plymouth Pennsylvania. 

Wells, J. B Baltimore Maryland. 

Welch, Edward Boston Massachusetts. 

White, Harry Boston Massachusetts. 

Wilkinson, John Brooklyn New York. 

Witschief, John New York New York. 

Witschief, Mrs. John New York New York. 

Will, Elam Easton Pennsylvania. 

Wood, T Syracuse New York. 

Wood, P w Boston Massachusetts. 

Wood worth, Miss S. E Brooklyn New York. 

Parsons, R. N Bridgeport Ocnnecticut. 

Wilson, E. D Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 



o 



DR. D. W. George, Treasurer, in Acc't with the Second National Deaf-Mute Convention. CR- 



1883. 

Aug. 30. Received from Members 

1884. 

Jan. 14. Received from R. B. Lawrence, Treas 
urer of the First National Convention, 
Balance remaining on bis hands. . . . 



$159 00 



16 00 



$175 00 



1884. 
March 5. 



1883. 

Aug. 30. Paid for 3 days' rent of Lyric Hall . . . 
W. A. Bond for services on Local 

Committee 

E. A. Hodgson for advertising in 

Journal 

W. A. Bond for advertising in 

Leader 

Jacques Loew for Silk Badges. . 
John Wilkinson for services on 

Local Committee 

W. H. Weeks for Treasurer's 
Book 

D. W. George for Treasurer's 

Book 

T. F. Fox for Secretary's Books . 

E. A. Hodgson for printing 
Badges 



By Balance on hand. 



$75 00 

10 00 

10 00 

5 00 
4 25 

3 00 

3 00 

3 00 
2 00 

1 00 

58 75 



$175 00 






S 

5 



s> 



s 
5' 



D. W. GEORGE, Treasvrer.